sexta-feira, 20 de fevereiro de 2009


Hong Kong newspaper protests as Macau refuses journalist entry
The Earth Times
Thursday, February 19

Hong Kong's leading English-language newspaper was protesting Thursday to officials in neighbouring Macau after one of its photographers was refused entry to the territory. Felix Wong of the South China Morning Post was detained and then sent back on a ferry to Hong Kong when he attempted to travel to Macau to cover a corruption case involving a former transport secretary.

Wong had been given a Macau government permit to cover the trial but claims he was sent back to Hong Kong after being made to sign papers saying he had been denied entry under internal security laws.

It is believed to be the first time that Macau, a casino resort under Chinese sovereignty situated 45 minutes west of Hong Kong by ferry, has refused a Hong Kong journalist entry.

Thursday's South China Morning Post reported that its editor CK Lau had written to Macau officials, calling the incident "a serious infringement of the freedom of the press."

Lau has demanded an apology from the Macau government as well as an assurance that Wong would be allowed to enter the territory of 500,000 people in the future, the newspaper said.

His letter is supported by the Hong Kong Journalists Association, which described the incident as "intolerable" and an infringement on the freedom of Hong Kong's press.

Last summer, Wong was taken away by Beijing police while covering a chaotic queue for Olympic Games tickets and accused of kicking a police officer as he was being dragged away, the South China Morning Post reported.

Wong was released after expressing regret for inadvertently hurting the officer, the newspaper said, and had returned to mainland China since without encountering any problems.

Macau reverted to Chinese sovereignty after 450 years of Portuguese rule in 1999, two years after Hong Kong. It has a reputation for being politically more similar to mainland China than its eastern neighbour and less enthusiastic about press and personal freedoms.

Nota: pelos vistos, a deplorável actuação das nossas autoridades fronteiriças, que nos envergonha a todos enquanto residentes de Macau, vai continuar enquanto o Legislative Council de Hong Kong não assumir uma reacção firme contra ela. Por mim, subscrevo a sugestão de Au Kam San: os deputados da nossa Assembleia Legislativa deviam, pura e simplesmente, ser proibidos de entrar na região vizinha...

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