Chinese state media had some harsh worlds for U.S. tech firms such as Google, Apple and Yahoo on Wednesday, calling them government “pawns” that must be punished.
The message, which condemned tech firms for spying on China and stealing secrets, first appeared on a microblog of People’s Daily, the Chinese government’s official newspaper, according to Reuters. Similar comments appeared on the front page of China Daily, an English-language paper.
It’s unclear whether the message is referring to a specific incident, or is just another case of China lashing out over U.S. surveillance policies, as revealed by Edward Snowden over the last year. In any case, analysts estimate that U.S. tech companies have lost billions of dollars from China, as state-run companies have turned to domestic firms instead.