World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Chinese Journalist Unfairly Tried In China

Chinese Journalist Unfairly Tried In China

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is dismayed by the almost farcical trial of New York Times researcher Zhao Yan in Beijing on June 16, which lasted only one day, called no witnesses and maintained a closed courtroom.

“Despite calls from the IFJ and the international community for a fair and open trial for Zhao, the reality was anything but. How can the Chinese authorities expect the world to take them seriously if they cannot respect such a basic human right as a fair trial?” IFJ president Christopher Warren said.

“Although no verdict has been delivered, the fact the courts took only one day to hear the entirety of Zhao’s case, the court’s refusal to call any witnesses, and the secrecy of closing the trial to the outside word, is a further disheartening indication of the dire press freedom situation in China,” Warren said.

Zhao was detained in September 2004 in connection with a New York Times’ article, which reported on the reshuffle of top leadership positions in the Communist Party of China (CPC), before it was officially announced.

Zhao was not formally indicted until December 2005 on charges of “fraud” and “revealing state secrets”. The charges were dropped in March 2006, however he was not released, and he was re-indicted in May. The penalty for leaking state secrets is a minimum of 10 years jail.

He has been detained now for almost two years.

Zhao is one of more than 30 journalists imprisoned in China. Although the Chinese Government has been commonly known to imprison Chinese journalists, in the past the government has refrained from jailing foreign journalists or those employed by foreign news agencies.

“If the Chinese government truly wants to improve its human rights and press freedom record it must start to respect basic international standards of freedom and must immediately desist systematically using unfair laws to muzzle journalists and political activists in China,” Warren said.

The IFJ calls for the immediate withdrawal of all charges and the release of Zhao Yan.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news