Protection of journalists' rights stressed

08:02, August 02, 2010      

Email | Print | Subscribe | Comments | Forum 

The country's top administration for press and publication has stressed the protection of reporters' rights in newsgathering, following a string of suspected attacks against journalists who exposed scandals.

"Media organizations have the right to know, interview, publish, criticize and supervise issues related to national and public interests," the General Administration of Press and Publication (GAPP) said in a statement on its website over the weekend.

"Normal and legal newsgathering activities by media organizations and their reporters and editors are protected by law," the GAPP said.

The administration said it will conduct special inspections across the country in the second half of this year and will require local press and publication departments to better protect the legal rights of local media organizations. The inspections will check the implementation of two regulations issued by the administration last year - the management of local bureaus of newspapers and periodicals, and the management of press cards.

In 2007 and 2008, the administration issued two circulars to urge related government authorities to offer help and necessary protection to legal newsgathering activities.

The circulars also made it clear that any disturbance or obstruction of reporters' rights is prohibited.

The GAPP latest move came after the case of a business reporter who was wrongly accused by a local public security bureau in Zhejiang province.

Qiu Ziming, a journalist with the Beijing-based Economic Observer, a business weekly, was on a national online list of criminals wanted by the public security bureau of Zhejiang's Suichang county from July 23 to 30. Qiu's previous reports exposing suspected insider trading in a listed company in the region were accused of "containing false information" and "having damaged the company's reputation", Wang Shengzhong, editor-in-chief of the weekly, told China Daily last Wednesday.

After the case received widespread attention from both the media and the public, the county public security bureau removed Qiu from the wanted list on Friday. Local publicity and public security officials arrived in Beijing the same day to apologize to Qiu.

In another case, four men who were allegedly from the Bawang Group broke into the Shanghai office of the National Business Daily on Friday afternoon. The four reportedly pushed and shoved reporters in the office.

The paper said in a statement that its negative reports on Bawang's shampoo products might have led to the attack.

Bawang said on Friday night that one of its marketing officers, surnamed Hong, went to the National Business Daily with two friends "to obtain information because they had some different opinions of the paper's reports on Bawang's products". They were chatting with an employee of the paper before a number of other people from the paper rushed to the reception room to attack them verbally. Quarrels and jostling reportedly ensued.

On Friday, the China Times also said in a statement that one of its female reporters, Chen Xiaoying, was beaten by a man allegedly from listed company Shenzhen International Enterprise Co Ltd. Chen had reportedly written a recent "negative report" on the company.

But Shenzhen International Enterprise denied it had anything to do with the attack, saying it had filed a lawyer's letter to the China Times about its "untrue report" on the company on July 16.

Fan Yijin, chairman of the Guangdong Journalists Association and dean of the journalism and communication department at Guangzhou-based Jinan University, said the latest cases showed how a number of local authorities and people ignored regulations from the central government to "treat, and manage media organizations well".

"The idea is clear, but some people often suppressed the media and they did it for certain interests or interest groups," Fan told reporters.

By Wang Yan, China Daily

(Editor:梁军)

  • Do you have anything to say?

双语词典
dictionary

  
Special Coverage
  • Premier Wen Jiabao visits Hungary, Britain, Germany
  • From drought to floods
Major headlines
Editor's Pick
  • Staff members watch a screen showing the blast-off of the Long March-2FT1 carrier rocket loaded with Tiangong-1 unmanned space lab module at Beijing Aerospace Control Center, Sept. 29, 2011. Commander-in-chief of China's manned space program Chang Wanquan announced Thursday night that the launch of Tiangong-1 space lab module was successful. (Xinhua/Wang Shen)
  • Chinese President Hu Jintao watches the launch of Tiangong-1 space lab module at Beijing Aerospace Control Center in Beijing, capital of China, Sept. 29, 2011. Other members of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, including Wu Bangguo, Jia Qinglin, Li Changchun, Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang and Zhou Yongkang, are also present. (Xinhua/Rao Aimin)
  • The graphics shows the launch procedures of the carrier rocket of Tiangong-1 space lab module, Long March-2FT1 on Sept. 29, 2011. (Xinhua/Lu Zhe)
  • Image taken from Beijing Aerospace Control Center shows a Long March-2FT1 carrier rocket loaded with Tiangong-1 unmanned space lab module blasting off from the launch pad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China's Gansu Province, Sept. 29, 2011. (Xinhua)
  • On Sept. 28, tourists travel around the Mingshashan Scenic Area in Dunhuang, Gansu province by camel. With the National Day vacation right around the corner, more and more tourists from home and abroad are going to Dunhuang. Riding on a camel, they travel in the desert to enjoy the cities rare form of natural scenery. (Xinhua/Zhang Weixian)
  • Chinese forest armed forces work together with forest firefighters on Sept. 28. (Xinhua/Chai Liren)
Hot Forum Discussion