Call for government help

PUBLISHED : Monday, 14 September, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 14 September, 2009, 12:00am

Urumqi

Hong Kong lawmakers have asked the central government for help.

They have asked Beijing to look at the issue of press freedom.

Two weeks ago police beat up three Hong Kong reporters. The reporters were in Xinjiang to cover a protest.

A provincial spokeswoman said the three journalists were making trouble and had broken the rules.

She said police found the journalists were giving orders to protesters.

The reporters' news agencies have denied this.

Background

The case is among several involving Hong Kong journalists getting in trouble on the mainland recently.

Five Hong Kong reporters were detained in Xinjiang three days after the beating. A Hong Kong TV crew was also held by Chengdu police who searched their hotel room for six hours looking for drugs. The news team missed a sensitive court case because of the search.

Beijing said it has improved freedom of the press since the Olympics. The mainland will have three sensitive anniversaries this year, its 60th birthday, the 50th anniversary of the Dali Lama's flight from Tibet and the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen incident.