Website Blocked for Reporting the Family Assets of China’s Vice-President

 

The International

Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has expressed frustration at the blocking of

the official website of the financial news organisation Bloombergwithin China

by the country’s authorities in apparent retaliation for the publication of an

article which referred to the assets of the relatives of China’s Vice-President

Xi Jinping.

 

On June 29, an

article with the title “Xi

Jinping Millionaire Relations Reveal Fortunes Of Elite” was published on

Bloomberg’s website. The report revealed that Xi’s extended family have

millions of dollars of assets. Although the article clearly states that there

is no indication that any of assets are owned by Xi or his immediate family, Bloomberg’s

official website and the Business Week were blocked by China’s

authorities immediately following the article’s publication.

 

“The overreaction of China’s

authorities in this case reveals that the understanding of press freedom by China’s

leaders still has a lot of room for improvement”, IFJ Asia-Pacific Office said.

 

“Although Xi is widely

tipped to become the next President of China, the media should not be prevented

for reporting on matters directly or indirectly related to him or his family”.

 

IFJ urges China’s

authorities to lift the blocking of the Bloomberg and Business Week websites,

and ensure that other websites are allowed to publish freely without fear of

censorship.

 

In recent years, an

increasing number of overseas media have launched Chinese language versions of

their websites. Although largely welcomed by professional and educated Chinese,

obstacles have been encountered. For example, it is reported that the New York

Times Chinese language website has so far been refused permission to open an

account on Weibo, China’s most popular blogging platform. No reason for the

refusal has been given.

 

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