The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins its affiliate the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA) in strongly criticising the move by the Macau Government to deny entry to Hong Kong journalists in the past month.
According to a statement issued by HKJA on September 18, more than 10 Hong Kong journalists have been denied entry to Macau by immigration officers in the past week. Each of the journalists was travelling to the Special Administrative Region of Macau for the local legislative council elections in September 17. The journalists were from Apple Daily, HK01 and the South China Morning Post. Since August 26, after Typhoon Hato, at least 15 Hong Kong-based journalists have been denied entry to Macau.
HKJA said that they were deeply concerned and regretted the latest move by the Macau authorities. HKJA is working on a letter to the Macau Government and the Security Bureau of the Hong Kong Government to demand an explanation as to why Hong Kong journalists are not allowed to enter Macau.
On September 17, the Macau legislative council elections saw the highest voter turnout in Macau. According to Macau’s Electoral Affairs Commission, the voter turnout rate was 57%, up 4% from the 2013 elections.
The IFJ Asia Pacific Office said: “Restricting the movement of journalists and media workers hinders their ability to freely report and ultimately impedes press freedom. The situation for Hong Kong journalists travelling to Macau remains unclear and raises questions about press freedom in the region.”
We join HKJA is urging all journalists to demand an explanation from the Macau and Hong Kong governments as to why their travel and movement is restricted.
For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0946
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