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


IFJ Demands Hong Kong Police Protect Media

IFJ Demands Hong Kong Police Protect Media

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) condemns a series of attacks and the blocking of photographers by unidentified people while they were carrying out their duties on August 4, 2013.

On August 4, at least five people verbally attacked, blocked and pushed photographers to the ground when they were recording a scuffle at Mongkok, Kowloon, Hong Kong. Lo Kwok-Fai, of Next Magazine, a subsidiary of Next Media Group, was pushed to the ground by unidentified men three times when he was trying to film the scuffle, which occurred between hundreds of supporters of an outspoken teacher and her detractors. Lo said one of the men who pushed him to the ground claimed to be a retired policeman. Yel Tang of Ming Pao Newspaper was blocked and pushed by the same group of people when he filmed Lo being attacked. The attack was filmed and uploaded to Youtube by a citizen journalist:

“A group of policemen were near us when the harassment began, but none of them came over to stop it,” Tang said.

“In fact, many photographers suffered harassment on that day and I feel that such hostile behaviour towards the media has occurred quite often lately.”

Tang, who is also an executive council member of the Hong Kong Press Photographers Association (HKPPA) added: “Because of that, we are more united and we wish people to know that as journalists, we merely wanted to report the facts. When people embrace their rights of expression, they should also respect people’s personal safety.”

The IFJ supports our affiliate, the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA), and the HKPPA in protesting and condemning the attack. Lui Tsz-Lok, convenor of the press freedom committee of the HKJA, accompanied Lo and Tang to the police station to file a complaint and said many photographers complained they were blocked, verbally harassed, pushed and attacked by unidentified people. The HKJA notes that 18 journalists suffered attacks in Mainland China and Hong Kong between the beginning of 2012 and the end of June 2013.

“It is totally unacceptable that police officers did not take immediate action against the attackers when two journalists suffered attacks,” Lui added.

The Police Department said a suspect who allegedly attacked Lo had been charged and released on bail.

The IFJ Asia Pacific Office said: “After the election of the Chief Executive of Hong Kong and calls for democracy and genuine universal suffrage for the elections of the Chief Executive and Legislative Council in 2016 and 2017, two polarised points of view have emerged in society. As journalists, they have a duty to report to the public.

“Unfortunately, at the same time, cases where journalists are targeted are escalating in Hong Kong. As well as journalists being verbally abused and physically attacked, media owners are being targeted.

“We urge Leung Chun-Ying, the Chief Executive of Hong Kong, and Andy Tsang, the Commissioner of Hong Kong Police, to send a clear message to society that press freedom is a fundamental right and is protected under the Basic Law of Hong Kong. In a civilised society, pluralism is the key and people should respect and protect the rights of freedom of press.

“We also urge Andy Tsang, the Commissioner of Police, to demand that all police officers respect and strictly follow the police officers’ manual, which sets down that police officers have a duty to protect media personnel while they are carrying out their duties.”


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


UN News: Monkeypox Outbreak Can Still Be Contained, Insists UN Health Agency
The monkeypox outbreak that has been reported in 16 countries and several regions of the world can still be contained and the overall risk of transmission is low, the UN health agency said on Tuesday...

UN: “COVID-19 Is Not Over”, Tedros Warns World Health Assembly
The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) told global health Ministers on Sunday that although reported COVID-19 cases and deaths have declined significantly, it is not time to lower the guard... More>>

UN: Bachelet Calls On Mexico To Step Up Efforts As Tragic Milestone Reached Of More Than 100,000 Disappearances

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Tuesday called on the Mexican authorities to step up efforts to ensure truth and justice for victims of disappearances, who now number more than 100,000, according to official data... More>>

Access Now: Elon Musk’s Twitter Buyout Must Not Come At The Expense Of Human Rights

Following today’s announcement that Elon Musk will acquire complete ownership of Twitter in a cash sale of around 44 billion USD, pending shareholder approval, Access Now urges Twitter’s Board, employees, and shareholders... More>>

UN: Biodiversity And Ecosystem Protection Highlighted On Mother Earth Day

Marking International Mother Earth Day, UN General Assembly President Abdulla Shahid urged on Friday, for collective action to safeguard biodiversity and protect ecosystems... More>>

Ukraine: Hundreds More Reach Safety After Fleeing Besieged Mariupol
In Ukraine, humanitarians said on Wednesday that hundreds of people have managed to reach safety after fleeing Mariupol, where there’s also been condemnation for the killing of Lithuanian filmmaker Mantas Kvedaravicius... More>>