A Hong Kong journalist with a newspaper linked to the Falun Gong spiritual group banned by the Chinese government was beaten with a baseball bat in a brazen attack in Kowloon on Tuesday, sparking a citywide police manhunt for two perpetrators. The assault on The Epoch Times reporter came almost a month after its Tsuen Wan printing plant was damaged by a gang of men. According to the Hong Kong Journalists Association, the victim is also the chairwoman of a local Falun Gong organisation. The 49-year-old victim said one of the culprits jumped out of a black Mercedes-Benz and hit her repeatedly with the bat just after she had left her residential block near the campus of Open University on Good Shepherd Street in Ho Man Tin shortly after 11.30am. The man attacked her without warning, she said. “I was beaten on the legs about 10 times. He only targeted my legs in the attack,” she said. The culprit fled in the same car after the assault, which lasted about one minute, she added. Police arrived after she made a report and although officers scouted the area, no arrests were made. The victim was taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Yau Ma Tei for treatment. A force spokesman said two men were wanted in connection with the attack and detectives from the Kowloon City criminal investigation unit were handling the case. When asked why the culprit targeted only her legs, the woman said: “I believe the attack was a warning rather than an attempt to take my life.” She would pay more attention to her personal safety following the incident, she said. The Hong Kong Journalists Association “strongly condemned” violence against media professionals and urged police to vigorously investigate the attack. The woman had reportedly been followed by unknown people recently, it said. “Press freedom is a core value behind the city’s success,” it said. “All violent threats against media and journalists is absolutely intolerable.” On April 12, four men rushed into the newspaper’s printing plant in Tsuen Wan, claiming the employees were in debt, and used hammers to smash computer screens and pour concrete rubble over a printing machine. The New York-based Epoch Times is banned in mainland China due to its critical coverage of the government, including its treatment of Falun Gong members.