Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Earth Science News .

Hong Kong media vow not to be intimidated after attack
by Staff Writers
Hong Kong (AFP) Feb 27, 2014

This undated photo released to AFP from the South China Morning Post (SCMP) newspaper on February 26, 2014 shows Kevin Lau, former editor of the Ming Pao newspaper, speaking to the media outside the Ming Pao Building in the Chai Wan district of Hong Kong island. The former editor of the liberal Hong Kong newspaper Ming Pao, whose sidelining triggered protests over media freedom and Beijing's influence in the territory, is in a critical condition after being stabbed, authorities said on February 26, 2014. Photo courtesy AFP.

Hong Kong journalists vowed Thursday not to be intimidated by a savage attack on a veteran colleague that has stoked fresh concerns for media freedom, declaring "they can't kill us all".

Kevin Lau -- former editor of the liberal newspaper Ming Pao -- is in critical condition in hospital after two men attacked him with a cleaver, sparking condemnation from the United States, the European Union and press groups.

The attack came amid mounting concern that China -- which also condemned the attack and offered words of support to Lau and his family -- is trying to tighten its control over the semi-autonomous territory.

Lau was removed as editor at the daily last month, triggering protests by staff. They feared that replacing him with an editor from Malaysia seen as pro-Beijing was an attempt to stifle the paper's strong track record of investigative reporting.

On Sunday protesters staged a demonstration in support of press freedom.

Journalists took to social media Thursday to express support for Lau, saying they would not be deterred from doing their jobs.

"They can't kill us all," read a widely-shared banner on Facebook, accompanied by a graphic featuring three fists clutching a pencil, a smartphone and a microphone, representing a journalist's tools.

"We are angry. We roar. We need to stand up," said a statement by a group of university journalism students on the social network.

At the Chinese University, where Lau taught journalism part-time, banners and flyers featuring the slogan were displayed.

Chan Yuen-man, a journalism lecturer there, told AFP that freedom of the press cannot succumb to "pressure or the invisible hand".

Ming Pao's usual red logo was coloured black on Thursday.

"My colleagues won't be scared because of this incident, we will continue with our work," wrote the newspaper's interim chief editor Cheung Kin-por.

Around 200 people held a candlelight vigil while wearing black to mark what they called the loss of press freedom. They wrote slogans such as "Condolences to press freedom" on the ground with white chalk at government headquarters late Thursday.

"It is incredibly absurd that freedom of the press can be supressed this way. People should stand up immediately," 19-year-old university student Leung Kai-ping, a participant at the protest, told AFP.

Lau, who was known for his uncompromising political investigations, was slashed six times with a cleaver.

Security cameras showed the suspects riding a motorcycle. No arrests have been made so far.

Police described the attack as "a classic triad hit, which was designed to maim, not kill, to send a warning", the South China Morning Post reported.

Lau has undergone surgery for wounds including a 16 centimetre-long (six-inch) gash that cut through his back muscles and remained in critical condition, a Hong Kong government spokesman said.

"Kevin is conscious...and the doctors have said that he doesn't need any more surgery at the moment," a statement from his family said.

Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying told reporters Lau had made progress.

"We are very concerned about the incident involving Mr Lau and strongly condemn the actions of the assailant," the deputy director of Hong Kong's Chinese liaison office Yang Jian told reporters late Thursday.

The US consulate has said it was "deeply concerned" as it joined calls from media groups for authorities to bring the perpetrators to justice.

On Thursday the European Union's office in Hong Kong said it was "shocked by the cruel attack" and welcomed Leung's insistence that the territory would not tolerate such violence.

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, which was behind a recent expose on the offshore accounts of China's elites on which it worked with Ming Pao, said it was "horrified".

The group said it had no evidence linking the attack to the probe into powerful mainland figures, but speculation over a connection "does reflect the real concern and anxiety felt by many in the Hong Kong press corps".

In June last year there were several attacks against employees of the outspoken Apple Daily. Chen Ping -- a publisher of a magazine known for its outspoken coverage of mainland issues -- was also beaten up.

Earlier this month, the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists said media freedom in Hong Kong was currently "at a low point", while Paris-based Reporters Without Borders said its independence "is now in jeopardy".


Related Links
Democracy in the 21st century at

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Blind activist sees Ukraine-like revolution on Chinese horizon
Geneva (AFP) Feb 26, 2014
Exiled, blind Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng laments that Beijing is cracking down harder than ever on human rights defenders, but says the leadership should brace for a Ukraine-style uprising. "It is possible for the Chinese to have a similar revolution to the one in Ukraine. It could happen any time," Chen told AFP through a translator. The 42-year-old self-taught lawyer who has been ... read more

Corpses still being found in Philippine typhoon zone

UN report sees $1.45 tn global warming cost: media

Tunisian navy 'rescues 98 sub-Saharan migrants'

Nepal government to set up contact office at Mt. Qomolangma base camp

ADS builds 'space furnace' to test materials of the future on the ISS

Novel optical fibers transmit high-quality images

Study finds 2 biodegradable mulches to be suitable polyethylene alternatives

EIAST showcases DubaiSat-2 results, plans for KhalifaSat at space conference in Singapore

Legal harvest of marine turtles tops 42,000 each year

Seed-filled buoys may help restore diverse sea meadows in San Francisco Bay

Egypt plans dam-busting diplomatic offensive against Ethiopia

Uncovering the secret world of the Plastisphere

10,000 years on the Bering land bridge

Native Americans lived in Bering Strait for millennia: study

Dramatic extent of Great Lakes freeze captured by NASA satellite

Dartmouth-led research shows temperature, not snowfall, driving tropical glacier size

China bans Polish pork amid African swine fever scare

Managed honeybees linked to new diseases in wild bees

Better livestock diets to combat climate change and improve food security

Australian canola case shows GM crops are still being demonised

Flood cost in EU may double by 2050: study

What has happened to the tsunami debris from Japan?

Volcanoes helped offset man-made warming

Mount Hood study suggests volcano eruptibility is rare

Little hope for C.Africa Muslims ahead of French president visit

Kenya boosts airport defence, warning of Islamist threat

Somalia: Resurgent al-Shabaab targets president 'dead or alive'

Five bodies exhumed in Mali thought to be murdered soldiers

Baylor Sheds New Light on the Habitat of Early Apes

Oldest fortified settlement in North America discovered in Georgia

What makes memories last?

Thinking it through: Scientists seek to unlock mysteries of the brain

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.