Chinese diplomats have accused a "western" media agency of disrespectful treatment of a gold medal-winning athlete.
Public anger voiced by diplomats was matched by a vicious response from state-run Chinese media organisations.
The controversy surrounds a photo of Chinese weightlifter Hou Zhihui, who took the first weightlifting gold of the Tokyo Games on Saturday.
China won the first three gold medal events in weightlifting after Hou dominated the 49kg competition first-up.
However, Chinese figures are unhappy about photos used in media organisations around the world showing "shameless" photos of Hou Zhihui when reporting her gold medal win.
The photo simply showed the 24-year-old straining in the middle of competition as she completed a lift.
The Chinese embassy in Sri Lanka first tweeted: "Among all the photos of the games, @Reuters has chosen this one, which only shows how ugly they are.
"Don't put politics and ideologies above sports, and call yourself an unbiased media organisation. Shameless."
China's The Global Times also published an article accusing the Reuters newswire service of "unfairly targeting China".
There were also bombshell claims from India on Monday night where it was reported Zhihui Hou has been asked to remain in Tokyo before flying home under the advice of anti-doping officials.
Full Kiwi schedule below. Click on a name to see athlete's bio, upcoming events, past Games performance and medal chance.
The report claims Indian silver-medallist Mirabai Chanu could be upgraded to the gold medal if Zhihui Hou tests positive for a banned substance.