IFJ condemns series of attacks on journalists in Shannxi Province

Media Release: China                                   

June 03, 2013


The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) condemns the three violent

attacks against journalists in Shannxi Province over the past week and is

particularly disturbed to learn of the involvement of Government

officials in one of the incidents.

 

On 29 May, Feng, a journalist of Shannxi Science and Technology Views

newspaper, was attacked by two men with a knife after he refused to accept

bribe during his investigations into an illegal land eviction in Yulin City,

Yuyang District. According to reports, the attackers yelled “Who asked you to

be so nosy!” Feng said the attack, which left him with several injuries,

happened during a meeting with the deputy minister of the local propaganda

department.

 

An additional two brutal attacks occurred

on 30 May. Two journalists of New West magazine reported

that they were threatened and attacked by several people under instruction from

the Department of Land and Resources, Shannxi province. According ot reports, the

pair were investigating illegal gold mining in Tongguan County, Weinan City.

When the pair made inquiries about a mining license to the department, a man claiming

to be the Director of the Department harassed and

scolded the journalists saying “Do we have to

report to media about what are we doing ? We have rights not to answer your

questions. I could make you die today.” The journalists

were then physically attacked by officers. One journalist was punched in the head

by the Director and kicked and punched all by

the other officers. He suffered numerous injuries as a result of the attack.

 

A third attached occurred at a vocational school in Weinan City. Two journalists

of a Shannxi Television were attacked by the Headmaster and Deputy Headmaster

of Shannxi HuaShan Vocational School when they were investigating a student

complaint. The journalists were injured and their camera damaged.

 

The IFJ I deeply concerned by the shocking brutality, victimisation and

complete disregard for role of media demonstrated by the government and leaders

in each of these three incidents. These attacks are an attack not only of the

individual journalists but also of press freedom in general” said the IFJ

Asia-Pacific office.

 

We urge the Central Government to act to ensure the safety of

journalists and foster an environment where they can carry out their

professional duties without interference.

    

For

further information contact IFJ

Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0950 

The IFJ

represents more than 600,000 journalists in 131 countries

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IFJ on Twitter: @ifjasiapacific

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