China Backtracks On Press Promises – Shailesh Palekar

From UPI Asia Online:

Local and Western media hailed the release of jailed New York Times Beijing Bureau researcher Zhao Yan on Sept. 15. However, the detention of two Agence France-Presse reporters near Shengyou, a village north of Beijing, three days earlier, flaunts China’s promises of press freedoms, liberal reporting rules, and suspension of decades-old restrictions on foreign journalists made in the run-up to the 2008 Olympics.

Premier Wen Jiabao’s new regulations on press freedoms allow foreign reporters to travel throughout the country and interview people without prior official permission, in accordance with a promise that China made to the International Olympic Committee to allow free reporting during and before the 2008 games. However, events indicate the game plan is only to convince the world that China has become an open and “harmonious society.” What it misses by a wide margin is a real commitment to play by the rules, in a spirit of genuine sportsmanship. [Full Text]



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