Threats to Journalists: China

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  • During the July 2009 ethnic riots in Urumqi, Chinese authorities detained RFA freelancer Heidi Tseu when she tried to photograph police officers handcuffing a group of Uyghurs. Tseu was held for several days and not permitted to contact or call relatives or friends during that period.  Authorities confiscated the memory card from Tseu’s camera and she was eventually expelled from Urumqi to Hong Kong.
  • While covering the after effects of the deadly Sichuan earthquake in May 2008, an RFA reporter was detained in the Tibetan area of the province for 48 hours.  During that period, his laptop was confiscated and its contents downloaded and screened.  The reporter, traveling as a Hong Kong resident, was expelled by provincial authorities back to Hong Kong.
  • Over the years, some DC-based RFA Mandarin language broadcasters have been targeted by authorities with acts of intimidation when visiting their families in China.  In one case, parents of a broadcaster were harassed before, during, and following a visit.  Another broadcaster who regularly visited her ailing mother was summoned for questioning during each of her visits.
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