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Yet another Hong Kong attack: Media executives bashed with iron bars

Hong Kong Journalists Association protest on 23 February 2014 calling for a
Hong Kong Journalists Association protest on 23 February 2014 calling for a "Free Press - Free Hong Kong"

HKJA/IFJ

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) condemns the March 19, 2014 violent attack on two Hong Kong media executives and has again called on Hong Kong's CEO to stand up and protect media freedoms under attack. The attack is the second in a month, following the horrific cleaver attack on former Ming Pau editor Kevin Lau on February 26.

On Wednesday, March 19, Lei Lun-han, 46, sole registered Director and Vice-President of a group preparing to launch the new newspaper Hong Kong Morning News, and news controller Lam Kin-ming, 54, were attacked by four masked men wielding iron pipes. The pair were attacked as they walked along Science Museum Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East. Lei's nose and knees were injured and Lam's right elbow was also wounded in the onslaught.

Hong Kong's Secretary for Security, Lai Tung-kwok said: "Hong Kong is a lawful society. We will not tolerate any savage act. We must condemn such violence."

The IFJ's local affiliate the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA), and the newly established Hong Kong Morning News Media Group have also strongly condemned the attack.

The group has said it will continue with its plans to launch the new newspaper.

The IFJ said: "This is the second attack on Hong Kong media executives in a month, and comes as part of a growing trend in Hong Kong. On the outset, it appears to be a threat to intimidate and stop the publication of the new newspaper."

On March 13 the IFJ and the HKJA delivered a letter to the Chief Executive of Hong Kong H.E. Leung Chun-Ying co-signed by 55 international human rights and media organisations calling on Mr Leung to take immediate steps to protect freedom of expression and defend press freedoms.

The letter included a catalogue of press freedom violations that have occurred between June 2013 and February 2014, including the brutal attack on Kevin Lau.

The IFJ said the Government of Hong Kong must send a clear and strong message to the public that violence will not be tolerated, and calls for the urgent investigation of this latest attack.

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