IFJ urges China to investigate political interference in a magazine

 

Media Release: China                                                    

May 07, 2013

 

The

International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) condemns the interference in the

release of an initial public offering of the Lens magazine, a subsidiary of SEEC Media Group Limited, because it

published a negative report about a labour camp in Liaoning.

 

On 6th April,

Lens magazine, in issue 62, published

an article which revealed that many of the women detained in the Masanjia Women’s labour camp had

been tortured by the officials running the camp. The local Government denied

the allegations of torture based on the findings of an ad hoc committee established

to investigate the allegations. They refused to make the findings public and only

certain parts of the report were made public

 

“The magazine

was prevented from issuing the IPO and had its publication licence cancelled because of the Masanjia article, which

revealed serious human rights abuses in the labour camp” said a journalist

working for the Group. “The magazine was originally scheduled to

make its public offering in June, but now the magazine will be issued free or

charge similar to its sister publications on sale in the market. ” he added.   

 

The IFJ Asia-

Pacific office said “This is clearly a violation of press freedom. If the

report was incorrect the Department could have taken legal action against the

magazine, not prevent it from issuing an IPO and cancelled its license.” 

 

This action

also coincides with a directive of the State General Administration of the

Press which demands positive reporting by print and electronic media about

issues related to the Central or Local Authority.  

 

The IFJ urges

the Central Government of China to refrain from interfering in press freedom.

The public has a right to know about important issues and the press play an

important role in ensuring the public’s right to know.

 

 

 

    

For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0950 

The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 131

countries 

Find the IFJ on Twitter: @ifjasiapacific 

Find the IFJ on Facebook: www.facebook.com/IFJAsiaPacific