Hong Kong authorities refuse visas for economist journalists


Hong Kong — Hong Kong authorities have refused to renew visas for foreign journalists working as economists without explanation, the magazine said.

Australian Surin Wong was based in Hong Kong and covered Hong Kong and China.

“We regret their decision …. We urge the Hong Kong government to maintain access to foreign media outlets that are essential to the status of the territory as an international city,” said the Economist’s editor-in-chief. Zanny Minton Beddos said in a statement on Friday.

The Immigration Bureau did not immediately respond to an email request for comment. Calls to the information office outside business hours were unanswered.

Many are worried about the erosion of press freedom in what was once a fortress.

According to a survey by the Foreign Correspondents Club of Hong Kong last week, nearly half of its members were considering leaving Hong Kong. They said they were concerned that press freedom would be reduced under the drastic national security law imposed by Beijing following a major anti-government protest in 2019.

“Very sadly, I can’t continue to report from Hong Kong. I loved to know the city and its people. I miss you,” Wong said on Twitter. Said in.

Wong previously worked for the Financial Times and Reuters in China.

Last August, the Hong Kong Immigration Bureau refused a visa to Aaron McNicholas, the next editor of the Hong Kong Free Press, an independent news agency, without explaining why.

In June, Apple Daily, a Chinese tabloid backed by billionaire Jimmy Lai in support of democratization, police frozen $ 2.3 million in assets, searched the office, and five people After arresting top editors and executives, he was forced to shut down. Police also accused foreign collusion individuals of endangering national security.

Associated Press

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