Google has stopped censoring its search results in China and started to re-direct Chinese users to an uncensored Hong-Kong based site.

Chinese state officials have been quick to criticise the move, saying it was ‘totally wrong’ and in violation of Google’s promise to abide by Chinese law.

Beijing’s firewalls are already censoring sensitive searches within mainland China.

Major political upheaval

Google has explained the move in detail on its blog.

For its part, China is clearly not happy with the latest moves by Google, with Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang saying that the move was an isolated act by a commercial company and that it should not affect China-US ties “unless politicised” by others.

A leading (and un-named) Chinese official responsible for online affairs told the Chinese state news agency Xinhua: “Google has violated its written promise it made when entering the Chinese market by stopping filtering its searching service and blaming China in insinuation for alleged hacker attacks.