Chen Yongzhou case: New Express publishes second plea for his release
Chinese newspaper The New Express has published a second front-page plea for the release of its journalist Chen Yongzhou held by police.
The New Express called for a second time in two days Chen Yongzhou to be freed.
Chen Yongzhou was taken away by police after he wrote about a part state-owned construction equipment company.
In a rare move, China’s publishing regulator has also voiced its concern over his detention.
The New Express, based in the southern city Guangzhou, published on the bottom of its front page a large four-character headline that read: “Again: Please Release Him.”
On Tuesday, the paper filled its front page with a three-character headline that read “Please Release Him.”
The New Express also accompanied the second day’s plea with a call to resolve matters under the rule of law.
“[Police] cannot take way people first and question them later,” the paper said.
Correspondents say the paper’s move is rare and bold at a time when the government is tightening control over the media and the internet.
Meanwhile, China’s publishing regulator, the General Association of Press and Publishing (GAPP), has voiced its concern over Chen Yongzhou’s detention.
GAPP “resolutely supports the news media conducting normal interviewing and reporting activities and resolutely protects journalists’ normal and legal rights to interview,” the China Press and Publishing Journal said, citing a GAPP official.
“At the same time, it resolutely opposes any abuse of the right to conduct interviews,” said the journal which is overseen by GAPP.
The article said the association was paying “close attention” to the matter.
Earlier this year, Chen Yongzhou wrote several reports about Zoomlion, which is partly owned by the Hunan provincial government.
Zoomlion issued a statement after one New Express article, which alleged it had improperly accounted for sales, caused its share price to drop.
In a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange in late May, the company called the claims “false, groundless and misleading”.
Like all Chinese newspapers, the New Express comes under strict state control, but it has nonetheless gained a reputation for investigative journalism.
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