Japan, Others Express Concern over Hong Kong Media Suppression


Washington, Feb. 8 (Jiji Press)--Japan, the United States and 19 other nations have issued a joint statement expressing their "deep concern" at the Hong Kong authorities' attacks on freedom of the press and their suppression of independent local media, the U.S. Department of State said Tuesday.

The statement was drawn up under the name of the Media Freedom Coalition, signed by the 21 countries, also including Britain, Canada, Germany and Australia.

The authorities have suppressed independent media in Hong Kong more strongly since the enactment of China's national security law in 2020, undermining "confidence in Hong Kong's international reputation," the statement said.

"We urge Hong Kong and mainland Chinese authorities to respect freedom of the press and freedom of speech in Hong Kong," the statement said.

Since last year in Hong Kong, Apple Daily, a newspaper critical of Beijing, has closed down and pro-democracy news sites Stand News and Citizens News have been forced to halt their operations.

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