the mudpond

It's good to let things breathe in your imagination because often your initial response to it is not the best thought-through response. I savour little glimpses of life. Mine and those of people who turn me sideways and around. Friend or stranger. Even a child. (the world looks different from down there) Sometimes an author, photographer, artist. I let things saturate and incubate here. Hopefully, deeper meanings can percolate up and flower.

Name:
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

A stray cat.

6/02/2005

Freedom Blog Awards: Is Silence Golden?

VOTING FOR THE Freedom Blog Awards closed yesterday.

I hope you voted for an
Asian blog that consistently and without prejudice or favour defended freedom of expression, be it in our beloved Bolehland or elswhere in Asia.


Posted by Hello
Why do I bring this up now?

Because of the relevance and significance of recent day events to what the Freedom Blog awards stand for. Because blogs have the influence to defend free expression. Because blogs can spread the word faster than most MSM. Because blogs are independent, free from political interference [I think]. Because they really care about freedom of expression - whether of bloggers and or of journalists. Because.

Because of China's second chilling blast at the foreign press in the period of a year.

It's a story that has been developing for a month now. A story given much attention from freedom advocacy groups such RSF or
Reporters without Borders [the same people who honor blogs with the Freedom blog awards], the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) [the same people who protect bloogers harrased by repressive authorities] and International Freedom of Expression Exchange (IFEX). It has also received wide coverage in MSMs such as the Washington Post, BBC, the South China Mornig Post, the Financial Times, China's The Standard, The Peninsula,.. even our own The Star (hey, kudos!)

I wonder why we didn't hear of it in the Malaysian blogosphere.

Silence is golden?

Less compelling, less important or less newsworthy than the
Deep Throat Mystery?

Anyway...

Ching Cheong, senior foreign correspondent for Singapore’s Straits Times was detained by Chinese authorities in Guangzhou on April 22 on charges of spying.

His wife Mary Lau said Ching was in Guangzhou to obtain manuscripts of secret interviews involving Zhao Ziyang: a Communist leader purged for opposing the Tiananmen Massacre of student protesters on June 4, 1989.

Lau said said Chinese authorities showed up and apprehended her husband shortly after he received the papers

The Straits Times' publisher Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. (SPH) confirmed that its Hong Kong-based correspondent was being held by authorities, but declined to discuss details. A spokeman said:

"We have been told by a spokesman for the Chinese Embassy in Singapore that Ching Cheong is assisting security authorities in Beijing with an investigation into a matter not related to The Straits Times."

China-born Ching, a permanent Singapore resident and a Hong Kong citizen, has been working for The Straits Times since 1996.

He has been in detention for over a month now. According to a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, Ching 55 has admitted to stealing 'core state secrets'.

Press freedom advocacy group Reporters without Borders in Paris has called on foreign governments to pressure China to release Ching. His arrest and detention has been described as a serious assault on freedom of information.

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) in a
news alert has called for the immediate release of Ching.

Ching is the second journalist for a foreign news organization to be arrested by President Hu Jintao’s government in a year. New York Times researcher
Zhao Yan was arrested last October on similar charges and is still awaiting trial.

Meanwhile, a new development - the CPJ
yesterday said Chinese authorities have leveled a new accusation of fraud against Zhao, allowing them to extend detention for an unspecified period of months.

Blog links: Singapore Angle, Singabloodypore, Singapore Ink, The Peking Duck, Imagethief, The Agonist, Simon World

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2 Comments:

Blogger 5xmom ~chanlilian.net~ said...

And closer to home, vote for Mudpond at PPS! Congrats, Percolator.

1:59 PM  
Blogger percolator said...

wahliao 5xmom... thanks for campaigning.

thanx, too, lucia for the support

but it's oredi Kenny's!!

3:31 PM  

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