China: Hong Kong media worker prevented from leaving, her house searched without warrantEvent
- Initial Date
- Jul 26, 2021
- Event Description
The Hong Kong police force’s national security unit searched a journalist’s home on July 26 and confiscated her travel documents, mobile phone and computer following the reporter recording a person attacking a police officer with a knife in Causeway Bay on July 1. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliate the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA) demand the police to explain why the reporter’s home was searched and travel documents confiscated.
The 56-year-old reporter for Secret China, a Chinese-language American media outlet, was asked to give a statement at Wan Chai police station as a witness on July 1 when the attack occurred. HKJA arranged for a lawyer to accompany the reporter to the police station and police said they would inform HKJA if they required further information from her. July 1 also marked the 24th anniversary of Hong Kong’s handover from Britain.
According to HKJA, on July 26, police did not notify the association and visited the reporter’s temporary residence to seek an additional statement. The reporter was accompanied by a friend when she gave the statement. Following the statement, police used a warrant to search the reporter’s home, confiscating her travel documents to prevent her from leaving Hong Kong and seizing equipment without a lawyer present. When HKJA became aware of this, the association arranged for a lawyer to be present on July 27, and she gave a statement “under caution” to the police.
The Hong Kong Free Press noted, “Implementation Rules for Article 43 of the national security law provides that police may only with a warrant confiscate travel documents belonging to a person under investigation over suspected violations of the security law.” A report written by the Centre for Law and Democracy supported by the IFJ highlights further broad and intrusive powers given to the national security unit under the National Security Law, limiting the right to privacy and freedom of expression.
- Impact of Event
- Gender of HRD
- Enactment of repressive legislation and policies
- Travel Restriction
- Rights Concerned
- Freedom of movement
- Right to healthy and safe environment
- Right to privacy
- Right to property
- Media Worker
- Monitoring Status
- Event Location
- Event Location
- Summary for Publications
On 26 July 2021, a female media worker whose name was withheld, had her house searched by the police, who seized her belonging including passport, after she recorded the stabbing of a police officer in Hong Kong, China.