"We never support any separatist organisation that damages China's sovereignty and territorial integrity", it says.
U.S. hotel giant Marriott has come under a new round of fire after one of its Twitter accounts was found to have "liked" and shared a post congratulating it over a gaffe in which it listed Chinese-claimed regions like Tibet and Hong Kong as independent countries.
Beijing is intensely sensitive about the status of Taiwan, the self-ruled island that communist-ruled China claims as part of its territory, and of Tibet.
As of Thursday, the official Marriott Rewards Weibo page had made four separate posts apologizing for the survey, which the company said it had taken offline. Both believe that the government of the other is illegitimate, as there is only one China (mainland and Taiwan), with each of them representing the legitimate administration.
Marriott has over 100 hotels in the country under different brands.
Marriott has now begun an investigation. "Unfortunately, twice this week, we had incidents that suggested the opposite", the company's President and CEO Arne Sorenson said in the statement.
"We are also working closely and co-operating with the relevant government authorities in China".
The issue has not been confined to foreign companies.
Similar gaffes were then spotted on the websites of other companies including Delta Air Lines and H&M. Ctrip.com International Ltd., China's largest travel website, said in October the number of tourists using the weeklong national holiday to visit South Korea plunged 70 percent this year.
"The new cybersecurity law also said that you can't do anything on the Internet to harm the sovereignty of the country", said Yin. Hong Kong, a former British colony, and Macau, a former colony of Portugal, were returned to Chinese sovereignty in 1997 and 1999, respectively, under the special arrangement called "one country, two systems". Chinese regulators forced the firms to formally apologize, but it could have been worse.