Many observers see this as further evidence of the erosion of freedoms in Hong Kong. The ex-british colony, returned to the bosom of chinese in 1997, has denied on Thursday the entry into its territory to a british journalist at the Financial Times. In the same day, the chinese writer in exile Ma Jian has announced that its participation at two conferences of the literary Salon international of Hong Kong had been cancelled by the arts centre where is held this event.
under the principle of “one country, two systems” adopted at the time of its handover, Hong Kong is supposed to enjoy until 2047 rights that do not exist in mainland China, including freedom of expression. But many hong Kong people feel that Beijing has been steadily increasing its grip on the territory’s semi-autonomous.
Victor Mallet, editor-in-chief for Asia of the british daily had previously been denied in October the renewal of his work visa in Hong Kong and had left the city. But the immigration services have refused him entry to the territory after several hour interrogation, while he was trying to return there as a visitor, stated her employer. However, uk citizens are usually allowed to enter without a visa to Hong Kong and stay there for 180 days.
“Shocked and stunned”
The authorities in hong kong have not explained their refusal to renew the work visa and Victor Mallet. But the journalist was irritated by inviting in August Andy Chan, the leader of the national Party, a small pro-independence, to a conference of the foreign correspondents ‘ Club (FCC), the fact that Beijing had tried to cancel. This Party was banned by Hong Kong in September.
The FCC said it is “shocked and stunned”, speaking of “serious penalty and disproportionate, which seems completely without foundation”. Amnesty International has condemned a “signal mean” on the state of press freedom in Hong Kong and “reprisals” against the british journalist. And Human Rights Watch (HRW), another NGO, defence of rights, for its part, noted that the crackdown on growing freedoms in Hong Kong causes of “censorship and self-censorship”. The minister of Security, John Lee, has assured venderdi that the last refusal of entry on the territory had “nothing to do with freedom of expression and freedom of the press”, without giving further details.
Ma Jian, who lives in London, is the author of books critical of the chinese company, which are banned in mainland China. He had to do this week promoting his latest novel, “China Dream”, which takes the slogan flagship of Xi Jinping, ” remarks on the ambition of the chinese president to give back to China its pride on the international stage. His british publisher has presented the work as a “satire on censorious totalitarianism”. The dissident writer, the 65-year-old has indicated that he was not able to find a publisher in hong kong for his latest novel, for the first time in his career.
the director of The new cultural center of Tai Kwun, Timothy Calnin, said that this space was deprogrammed Ma Jian, because he did not want to “become a platform for the promotion of the political interests of an individual”. “I’m a novelist, not an activist”, has responded, on Twitter, Ma Jian, for which no freedom of thought and expression, “life has no meaning”. “Before, Hong Kong was a place of refuge for the arts and literature, a place where you had the impression that you could protect yourself from China and find a real freedom of thought. But today, this period is slowly disappearing,” he explained to the New York Times. The author of “chinese Noodles” and “Beijing coma” took the plane to Hong Kong, where he is expected Friday afternoon. “There is a clear trend according to which those who discuss a peaceful way of political ideas and sensitive, or even provide a platform to discuss these topics, are increasingly under pressure,” said Patrick Poon, a specialist on China at Amnesty International.