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Hong Kong journalists prevented from filming, fear for safety following warning by police

(IFJ/IFEX) - The following is an IFJ media release:

Hong Kong Media Workers Report Police Interference in Beijing

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) expresses new concerns about Hong Kong journalists in Beijing after reports of another case of apparent interference by security officials.

Reporters from Radio Television Hong Kong (RTHK) told the IFJ that they were approached by police in Beijing's Chongwen District on July 30 after the police discovered them filming a citizen appealing against the government's acquisition of his land in the appeals department of Chongwen District People's Government.

An RTHK camera operator, who requested that his full name be withheld, said that police demanded he stop filming. He asked police under what law they could prohibit him from filming, but was given no answer.

The camera operator also reported that the police took photographs of himself and a fellow reporter without giving reasons.

When leaving the area, police then warned the two media workers to "be careful".

"We felt a bit of insecure because we were within their region, we couldn't guarantee what they would do to us, and at the same time we are quite worried about being followed," one of the journalists told the IFJ.

The two RTHK media workers had originally planned to revisit the area to file further reports, but have rearranged their schedule to avoid the area.

This new case follows several cases of police interference with journalists from Hong Kong television and newspapers over the past week.

"This is another disappointing case which highlights local officials' interference in basic reporting work," said IFJ Asia-Pacific.

"Once again, we call on China to ensure that all officials and agencies abide by the Regulations issued last year and allow journalists from within and without China to work freely."

The IFJ represents over 600,000 in 122 countries worldwide.

For further information on recent harassment of Hong Kong journalists in China:

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