Press Freedom in China

Journalists and activists demand information following the disappearance of five publishers and journalists in Hong Kong in late 2015. Credit: AFP/Anthony Wallace

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) initiated a program in early 2008 to monitor and report on press freedom and violations of media rights in China in the lead-up to the Olympic Games in Beijing in August 2008. The IFJ’s first annual report on press freedom in China, Opens external link in new windowChina’s Olympic Challenge, assessed the media environment through 2008 and, even as it noted many instances of infringements of journalists’ rights and media freedom, there was some optimism at year’s end that China was moving, if slowly, toward a freer, safer and more secure working environment for local and foreign journalists.


Media violations monitoring and Press Freedom: 

Since 2008 the IFJ has been mapping and recording media violations across mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau. The Press Freedom Violations Map documents the violations, including where they took place, when and a description of the incident. 

To view the map, click Opens external link in new windowhere and use the drop down menu to navigate the map. 

China Press Freedom Report: 

Every year, in January, the IFJ publishes the China Press Freedom Report. The report catalogues press freedom violations for the previous year, as well as the challenges facing media workers across China. The report also documents the work of many trying to overcome the obstacles they face in their work and telling their stories. 

Access the China Press Reports Opens external link in new windowhere

The 2015 China Press Freedom Report will be launched on January 30, 2016 in Hong Kong. 

IFJ Actions in China: 

IFJ works to support journalists and media workers across China, as well as working to support and promote press freedom. 

Gao Yu: Demanding her immediate release

Following the sentencing of veteran journalist, Gao Yu, in April 2015 the IFJ launched a global campaign calling for immediate release. The campaign was launched to coincide with World Press Freedom Day 2015 and saw the IFJ write letters from its affiliates to Chinese President, Xi Jinping, demanding action. 

See more from the action Opens external link in new windowhere

Hong Kong: Freedom of expression

In March 2014, the IFJ joined with IFEX to call on Hong Kong Chief Executive, Leung Chun-Ying, to take steps to protect freedom of expression and defend press freedom after a spike in the number of dangerous incidents in the media industry. The incidents, which were first documented by the IFJ in June 2013 culminated in the brutal attack on Ming-Pao former chief editor, Kevin Lau. 

See more from the action Opens external link in new windowhere and Opens external link in new windowhere

Placard of Gao Yu placed at the China Liaison Office in Hong Kong following a protest. Credit: AFP/Philippe Lopez

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