Media workers jailed in China continues to rise

Photo: The disappearance of five Causeway Bay bookseller employees highlights the increasing detention of media workers in China. Credit: AFP/Philippe Lopez

The IFJ has documented 51 cases of journalists and other media workers who remain jailed or detained in China because they exercised their right to free speech and respected the public’s right to know. The full number is believed to total at least 68. The IFJ’s China Press Freedom Report 2016 records the names of the 51 detained workers, when and where their alleged crimes took place, the accusations against them, the sentences they were given, where these are known, and their current status. In 2016, there were two major incidents. The first involved three journalists in Wuwei City, Gansu Province. The second involved five people working with Causeway Bay Bookstore in Hong Kong. As in previous cases, the detainees worked for media organisations that had been critical of the Mainland authorities and had attempted to hold officials to account. Two of the Hong Kong workers held foreign passports, one was taken from his home in Thailand, and one appears to have been abducted in Hong Kong. Their circumstances proved to be no protection. China said they fell under its jurisdiction because they were Chinese citizens first. One Hong Kong worker courageously broke the conditions of his release and gave a press conference. He said he was confined for eight months, interrogated abusively, subjected to mental torture and forced to make a false confession. His revelations confirm the violations that the IFJ believes are suffered by most, if not all, of China’s media prisoners. The IFJ deplores China’s mistreatment of media workers and calls on the Chinese authorities to release all detainees and prisoners immediately. Access Strangling the Media: China Tightens its Griphere.Access the IFJ jailed journalist list here.See IFJ mapping of violations of media rights in China here 

For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0946 

The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 139 countries

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