China has now reiterated its position in its standoff with Google (NSDQ: GOOG) — and it looks like all that remains is for Google to finally make its move. China says it won’t let Google operate an unfiltered search engine in the country. The latest statement from a government minister (via CNET): “If you insist on taking this action that violates Chinese laws, I repeat: you are unfriendly and irresponsible, and you yourself will have to bear the consequences.”
Google, meanwhile, continues to insist that it will no longer censor its search results in China — a position it first took two months ago. The two sides are in ongoing discussions — although considering the public stands Google and the Chinese government have taken it doesn’t seem like any sort of compromise is possible.
Any move by Google to stop censoring its results in China will likely lead to a shutdown of its search service there, although the consensus is that the company will probably be able to maintain its other operations in the country.
Expect some sort of formal announcement by Google soon. Google CEO Eric Schmidt said this week that a resolution was coming — and the WSJ cites sources who say that Google may stop filtering its results “within weeks.”