IFJ Dismayed by New Blocks on Media in China


International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is dismayed to learn that several

foreign media websites, including Hong Kong newspaper websites and a legal

website, have been blocked in China.



media websites including the BBC Chinese portal, Hong Kong newspaper Ming Pao, Radio Free Asia and Voice of

America, which were unblocked during the lead-up to the Olympic Games in August,

have been blocked once more.


A legal

website, www.fatianxia.com,

has also been ordered to close after posting several articles including the Charter

08, a joint statement signed by several hundred Chinese journalists, writers,

lawyers and activists calling on the National People’s Congress Standing

Committee to ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights




administrator of the site was told the closure was due to breaches of domestic

law, and the site’s hosting service took down the site on December 16.


Zan Aizong,

a well-known blogger who also contributed to the site, told the IFJ that his

blog has also been blocked after he posted the Charter.


In 2007, China

made internet service providers to sign a “self-discipline pact” which forces them

to censor content and to request the real identities of all bloggers.


China also detained and arrested several of the signatories to the Charter, sparking

international protests.


“The IFJ

is dismayed that China’s

authorities are backtracking on their commitments to allow free access to the

internet,” IFJ General Secretary Aidan White



“While China

claims to respect basic freedoms, it must put its words into action.”


The IFJ urges


to unblock access to the websites concerned and allow bloggers and online

journalists to work as normal.


The IFJ is

also distressed to learn that Wai Wing-hong, a journalist from Ming Pao, was assaulted by construction

workers after taking photos of an industrial accident at the City University of

Hong Kong on December 16. Wai sustained injuries to his head, waist and hands.


The editor-in-chief

of Ming Pao, Cheung Kin-bor, and the Hong

Kong Journalists’ Association (HKJA), an IFJ affiliate, condemned the violence.


“The IFJ

urges the police to investigate this case and demands an apology and

compensation for the journalist concerned. Journalists should know they are

safe to report without fear of attack.”


For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0919



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