Non-Chinese accredited media blocked from APEC meetings

During the APEC Summit that was held in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea between November 12 to 18, 2018 accredited non-Chinese media were barred from covering several meetings. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) strongly criticized the move by Chinese officials, who blocked several local journalists from covering China’s President Xi Jinping’s meeting with Pacific leaders.

China's President Xi Jinping at the 2018 APEC Summit in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. Credit: SAEED KHAN / AFP

President Xi Jinping held a forum with leaders from several Pacific nations including, Cook Islands, Fiji, Micronesia, Niue, Samoa, Tonga, Vanuatu and PNG, as part of the APEC Summit. According to Reuters several accredited journalists had their media access barred by Chinese officials, citing space and security concerns. Chinese officials suggested journalists cite reports on the forum by state-run Xinhua. Journalists from PNG media outlets EMTV and the Post Courier were among those barred by officials.

Lina Keapu, photojournalist at PNG’s Sunday Chronicle newspaper told Reuters it was a “slap in the face. As the local media, we should be there covering it and getting the news to our national public.”

According to Radio NZ, the situation at APEC comes after PNG media were barred from recording a speech by President Xi when he opened a new road in Port Moresby. In that incident, only CCTV, China’s state-run media were allowed access to the audio.

The IFJ said: “It is completely unacceptable that accredited journalists were barred from covering forums part of the APEC Summit. The decision by Chinese officials is a violation of access to information and press freedom. They cannot

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The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 140 countries

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