Federation of Journalists (IFJ) notes with concern that authorities in China censored online reporting about human
rights discussions between the United States
A two-day closed-door meeting
between China diplomats and US officials in Washington began on May 13, signalling
the re-opening of dialogue between the two powers on human rights, racism and
related internal unrest such as protests by ethnic Tibetans and Uyghur peoples.
The State Council Information Office
of China directed all online media outlets on the mainland not to post reports relating
to the bilateral talks on the front pages of news sites. The order also directed
that all content about the talks be “correctly” reported.
The directive did not elaborate on
the meaning of “correctly”. However, local sources say China’s media did not report on points raised by
the US delegation which were
related to China’s human
rights reputation, including Tibet,
religious freedom and internet censorship.
“This kind of international dialogue
is promising, but it is ironic that talks between the US and China
on issues pertaining to press freedom and freedom of expression have been censored
IFJ General Secretary Aidan White
In recent weeks, the State Council
Information Office opened a new bureau for monitoring social networking sites
and online forums. The move includes initiating a formal identification process
for people wishing to post content online.
The IFJ calls on China’s authorities to honour China’s constitutional guarantees
to provide citizens with an open and diverse media, supported by the unhindered
work of journalists, whether online or in traditional media.
information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0919
represents over 600,000 journalists in 125 countries worldwide