Hong Kong police arrest former Apple Daily journalist at airport

Young journalists club

News ID: 52099
Asia » Asia
Publish Date: 9:02 - 28 June 2021
Monday , 28 June 2021 (YJC) _Hong Kong police arrested a former senior journalist with the now-closed Apple Daily newspaper at the international airport on Sunday night on a suspected national security offence as he tried to leave the city, according to media reports.

Hong Kong police arrest former Apple Daily journalist at airportPolice, who typically do not name arrested people, said in a statement that a 57-year-old man had been arrested at the airport for "conspiring to collude with foreign countries or foreign forces to endanger national security". They added that he had been detained and investigations were continuing.

Hong Kong media identified him as Fung Wai-kong, an editor and columnist at the now-closed paper. If confirmed, he would be the seventh staffer at the pro-democracy Apple Daily newspaper to be arrested on national security grounds in recent weeks.

Reuters could not independently confirm that the arrested man was Fung.

Fung could not be contacted for comment. It was not immediately known if he had legal representation.

The Hong Kong government did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Next Digital (0282.HK), the publisher of Apple Daily, did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

Apple Daily, a popular tabloid, was forced to fold following a raid by 500 police on its headquarters on June 17 and the freezing of key assets and bank accounts. It printed its last edition last Thursday.

Authorities say dozens of the paper's articles may have violated a China-imposed national security law, the first instance of authorities taking aim at media reports under the legislation.

Critics of the law, introduced last June, say it has been used to stifle dissent and erode fundamental freedoms in the former British colony that returned to Chinese rule in 1997.

Authorities say the law has restored stability after months of often-violent pro-democracy protests.

Officials in Hong Kong and China have repeatedly said media freedoms are respected but not absolute, and cannot endanger national security. Police have said the actions against Apple Daily were not targeting the media industry as a whole.

Your Comment