IFJ Condemns Attacks on Press Freedom in Hong Kong

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has written today to Hong Kong’s Commissioner of Police condemning the actions of the Hong Kong police to remove reporters from covering an overnight demonstration in front of the Central Government Offices.


The IFJ, the global organisation of journalists representing over 500,000 journalists worldwide, is extremely concerned over the excessive use of force used in removing two reporters who were covering the demonstration resulting in one reporter receiving hospital treatment.


According to information from our affiliate the HKJA, police used excessive force to first remove reporters and then demonstrators carrying out the demonstration.


The demonstrators were protesting the decision by the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress’ to ‘issue interpretation’ on the Basic Law. The decision would effectively dampen the people of Hong Kong’s demand for a directly elected head of Government and legislature in 2007 and 2008.


“The actions taken by the Hong Kong police are in direct contrast to the Hong Kong people’s right to know,” said IFJ President Christopher Warren today.


“It is essential that journalists be allowed to carry out their job and report the news, free from violence and attempts at censorship,” said Warren.


The IFJ has condemned the actions taken by the Hong Kong police force for jeopardising the freedom of the press and violating the Hong Kong people’s fundamental right to know. The IFJ is outraged over the use of violence to remove reporters from the demonstration by Hong Kong police.


The IFJ has called on the Police Commissioner of Hong Kong to launch an investigation into the actions of the police officers involved and has called upon the Hong Kong police force to protect press freedom and the safety of all journalists in Hong Kong.


For further information, please contact Christopher Warren on +61 411 757 668.

The IFJ represents over 500,000 journalists in more than 100 countries.



<center>PROTEST LETTER</center>



The IFJ has written to the Commissioner of Police in Hong Kong condemning the actions taken by police in the following letter:



7 April 2004



Mr. Lee Ming Kwai

Commissioner of Police

Commissioner’s Office

Police Headquarters

Aresnal Street

Wan Chai

Fax: (852) 2865 6546

Email: cp@police.gov.hk



Dear Sir,


The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the global organisation of journalists representing over 500,000 journalists worldwide, is deeply concerned over attempts by the police to remove reporters from an overnight demonstration.


According to information from our affiliate the HKJA, police used excessive force to first remove reporters and then demonstrators carrying out an overnight demonstration in front of the central Government Offices. Two reporters were forcefully carried away, resulting in one reporter receiving injuries resulting in hospital treatment.


Demonstrators were protesting the decision by the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress’ to ‘issue interpretation’ on the Basic Law. The decision would effectively dampen Hong Kong People’s demand for a directly elected head of Government and legislature in 2007 and 2008.


The IFJ condemns the actions taken by the Hong Kong police force for jeopardising the freedom of the press and violating the Hong Kong people’s fundamental right to know. The IFJ is outraged by the use of violence by the Hong Kong police to remove the reporters from the demonstration.


The IFJ calls on the Police Commissioner of Hong Kong to launch an investigation into the actions of the police officers involved and calls upon the Hong Kong police force to protect press freedom and the safety of all journalists in Hong Kong.



Yours sincerely,




Christopher Warren

President, IFJ



Recommend Action:


Send appeals:


  • Condemning the actions taken by the Hong Kong police force in removing reporters and demonstrators

  • Urging the Police Commissioner of Hong Kong to launch a full investigation into the actions of the police involved using excessive force.

  • Urging the Government of Hong Kong to ensure press freedom and safety of all journalists working in Hong Kong



    Send Appeals:


    Mr. Lee Ming Kwai

    Commissioner of Police

    Commissioner’s Office

    Police Headquarters

    Aresnal Street

    Wan Chai

    Fax: (852) 2865 6546


    Email: cp@police.gov.hk


    Appeals:


    Please copy appeals to the IFJ Asia Office at ifj-asia@alliance.org.au


    For further information please contact IFJ Asia at ifj-asia@alliance.org.au