Chinese Investigative Journalist Forced to Resign

The International

Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is deeply frustrated by reports that another

prominent investigative journalist has been forced to resign after reporting on

a failure of process in the judicial system in Shanghai.


Yang Haipeng, an

investigative journalist for Shanghai’s

Caijing magazine, was forced to

resign on October 13, a week before his wife was sentenced to four years

imprisonment for corruption.



resignation follows the dismissal in August of


Zhong, the president of Nan Feng Chuang (NFC) magazine, for being

"unable to correctly censor the magazine's

articles and for taking things in the wrong political direction”. Other

publications, including Jinghuaand Great

Wall Magazine, have also recently been stripped of their investigative

functions by Chinese authorities in recent months.


According a report from the

World Journal on November 15, Yang

signed his termination letter in response to a meeting with the editor-in-chief

of Caijing. It is alleged that the

meeting took place a week before the sentencing date of Yang’s wife, and sought

Yang’s commitment to remain silent on the case.


The report suggests that

Yang’s forced resignation was likely the result of pressure placed on Caijing by the government of Shanghai. Yang had reportedly

upset Shanghai government officials by

publicising an apparent injustice in proceedings of Shanghai’s Minhang District People’s Court. In

a report on Yang’s microblog he claimed that the judge of the court had brought

a guilty verdict against his wife, without hearing evidence from the alleged

recipient of the bribe.


Yang graduated in law and

trained as a judge before joining the media industry. In his reporting he has uncovered

numerous cases of malpractice by local government officials.


“It is quite common for

authorities to arbitrarily conduct indirect retaliation against people it sees

as a threat,” IFJ Asia-Pacific Director

Jacqueline Park said.


“Although we are not

surprised at such actions, we are disappointed that it appears the hands of

media employers were tied, not only by government regulatory bodies but also by

external political forces.”


The IFJ urges the General

Administration of Press and Publication (GAPP), and the All-China Journalists’

Association, to establish an individual investigative group, including

independent third parties, to investigate Yang’s case and determine whether there

has been any undue interference by the government into the operations of the



For further

information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific

on +612 9333 0919



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