Foreign Ministry Still Considering Reporter’s Visa

China’s Foreign Ministry said today that it is still considering the visa application of New York Times reporter Chris Buckley, an Australian and longtime China correspondent who had to leave the Mainland on Monday when his previous visa expired. From The Wall Street Journal:

“The Chinese government always deals with issues related to foreign correspondents in China based on law and regulation,” the Foreign Ministry said in a written response to questions. “His application is still under consideration,” it added.

Mr. Buckley, an Australian national, has declined to comment on the matter. A spokesman for the Australian embassy in Beijing has also declined to comment.

The Foreign Ministry said in its statement that it was incorrect to say Mr. Buckley had been deported or that approval of his visa being delayed.

In a statement this week, the Times’ executive editor, Jill Abramson, said she hoped “the Chinese authorities will issue him a new visa as soon as possible.”