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Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson's Remarks
2020/09/09

Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson's Remarks

2020/09/08

Reuters: The Australian embassy and two Australian news bureaus have arranged two Australian journalists to leave China over what they say a serious concern regarding their security in the country. The two journalists said they were questioned by relevant departments in China as part of a national security investigation. What's the ministry's comment on this?

Zhao Lijiang: The relevant departments in China, during their investigation of a case, questioned the two journalists in accordance with law. These were normal law enforcement activities. During the entire process, the Chinese departments conducted themselves in strict accordance with law.

I also want to stress that China's basic state policy of opening up has not changed and will not change. China always welcomes foreign journalists, including those employed by the Chinese media, to report and work in China in accordance with laws and regulations, and has always provided and will continue to provide convenience and assistance to this end. China protects the legitimate rights and interests of news reporters and editors in accordance with the law, but journalists are also obliged to abide by Chinese laws and regulations. As long as foreign journalists abide by the law and report according to regulations, there is no need for them to have any worries.

Reuters: I wanted to ask whether the two Australian journalists are permitted to return to China and will these two Australian news bureaus be able to obtain accreditation in the future? And will the ministry continue to process visas of other Australian journalists?

Zhao Lijian: We have no more information to offer at the moment. I would like to repeat that China handles relevant matters regarding foreign media and journalists in China in accordance with laws and regulations.

Reuters: The Australian media outlet suggested that their questioning was related to detention of Cheng Lei, the Australian CCTV journalist. Can the ministry confirm that their questioning was related to Cheng Lei's case?

Zhao Lijian: As I just said, the relevant departments in China, during their investigation of a case, questioned the two journalists in accordance with law. These were normal law enforcement activities. During the entire process, the Chinese departments conducted themselves in strict accordance with law.

As for the Australian citizen Cheng Lei, her case is still under investigation and in legal process, and her legitimate rights and interests are fully guaranteed.

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