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FCC Hong Kong joins FCCC in condemning expulsion from China of WSJ’s Chun Han Wong

The FCC Hong Kong joins the FCCC in condemning Chun Han Wong’s de facto expulsion from China. It calls on the Chinese government to respect media freedom and to allow foreign correspondents to work freely without fear of punitive measures such as non-renewal of their visas. 
FCCC issued the following statement:
The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China is saddened and angered to learn that Wall Street Journal reporter Chun Han Wong has been effectively expelled from China after authorities declined to renew his press credentials.
As far as the FCCC is aware, Wong is the sixth journalist to leave China under such circumstances since 2013. Many of those who have been evicted are talented and professional correspondents who have sought to understand China and tell its stories in a factual and unbiased fashion.
The FCCC notes with particular concern a statement from China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in which it accuses “a few foreign reporters” of “maliciously tarnishing China,” adding: We don’t welcome such reporters.” It was Chinese president Xi Jinping himself who, in 2017, said “we encourage reporters to travel and see more of China… to learn about and continue to report on more aspects of China.”Expulsions of journalists from China amount to an extreme attempt by Chinese authorities to punish news organizations that conduct factual work that does not cast the country or its leadership in a flattering light. Foreign correspondents are not propaganda workers, and should not be treated as such.
The FCCC condemns in the strongest possible terms the use of visa non-renewal as a form of punishment. Such treatment of foreign correspondents runs completely counter to Chinese claims that it supports openness and inclusiveness. Such actions should raise further concerns as China prepares to host major future global events, such as the Winter Olympics in 2022.

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