Justin Bieber’s recent video sending love to China amidst the coronavirus outbreak may have put him back in good books with the Chinese authorities. Bieber has been subject to a performance ban in the country since 2017 due to what the government deemed “misbehavior,” including a visit to Japan’s Yasukuni Shrine to war dead.
The pop star took to Instagram and Chinese social media platform Weibo last week to lend his support to the fight against the disease. In the video, he says, “I know it’s a very scary time in your country, but my prayers and support go out to you guys.” “Let’s fight through this together. Jiayou!” reads his Weibo caption. “Jiayou,” or “add oil” is equivalent to “Come on” in Chinese.
View this post on InstagramA post shared by Justin Bieber (@justinbieber)
A post shared by Justin Bieber (@justinbieber)
The next picture shows a document from the Beijing Chunmiao Charity Foundation thanking “比伯先生” (Mr. Bieber) for his donation of 200,000RMB (around 28,500USD). The certificate formally dubs him a “爱心人士,” or “caring person.”
Bieber’s latest album Changes was released the next day, on Valentine’s Day, in China.
Bieber also shouted out Chinese megastar Kris Wu and thanked him “for the conversation.” Wu himself has also been active on social media in regards to coronavirus, promising concert tickets to nurses and releasing special music videos of support. Wu and Bieber have known each other for some time, playing on the same team at the NBA’s 2018 All-Star Celebrity Game.
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Bieber’s comments have unsurprisingly meeting with praise from Chinese netizens.
“Thanks, biebie… In Chinese we say ‘hao ren you hao bao,’ means good things happen to a kind person. So, wish you all the good things,” writes one Chinese Belieber. Another reads, “And the Chinese government banned Bieber…thank you Bieber for your kindness to the Chinese.”
The move has led to speculation that the performance ban on Bieber may be lifted in China, allowing him to return for shows in the country for the first time since his Believe Tour in 2013. Even Party propaganda outlet Global Times weighed in, with an op-ed piece stating that “we all agree that this ‘bad boy’ has come back with changes that people are happy to see. So why not give him a chance?”
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