Since CPJ blogged on Monday that tougher tactics are emerging in China toward local and foreign media–and the situation looks to get worse–a few more developments have arisen.
On Tuesday, the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China issued an email statement that it “strongly regrets” the forced departure from China of New York Times correspondent Austin Ramzy because of delays in his journalistic accreditation. The FCCC called the government’s claims that the reporter had not complied with visa regulations “disingenuous.”
“Ramzy is the third New York Times journalist not to have been given journalistic accreditation or a resident journalist visa in 18 months. In these circumstances it is difficult to avoid the conclusion that the authorities are punishing The New York Times for articles it published concerning [former] Premier Wen Jiabao and his family. Such behavior falls well short of international standards,” the FCCC pointed out in its message.
Meanwhile, our colleagues at the International Federation of Journalists on Tuesday used the Foreign Correspondents’ Club in Hong Kong to launch its 2013 Annual Report on Press Freedom in China and Hong Kong. This, the sixth edition of the report, is entitled “Back to a Maoist Future: Press Freedom in China 2013.” Enough said. (The English version is here, the traditional Chinese character version is here, and the simplified character version is here. IFJ also has posted a useful Press Freedom Violations in China interactive map.)
And in Monday’s post we mentioned that Hong Kong publisher Yao Wentian, 73, was grabbed in Shenzhen, just across the border from Hong Kong, in October, but the situation only recently came to light. China Digital Times has a roundup of the details of Yao’s case, which are somewhat murky.