Senior FT Editor Refused Entry into Hong Kong

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On Thursday 8th November, a Senior Financial Times Editor was refused entry to Hong Kong. The Hong Kong authorities have not only denied Victor Mallet a work visa, but seem to have blacklisted him from entering the city at all. This is a bizarre decision for a global financial hub to pick a vendetta with a Senior Editor at the Financial Times.

Benedict Rogers, Chair of Trustees at Hong Kong Watch said:

"The decision to expel the Financial Times' Asia Editor Victor Mallet was a very serious blow to press freedom in Hong Kong. The decision now to deny him entry to even visit Hong Kong is an absolutely shocking step and gravely undermines Hong Kong's reputation as an open, global city. It is a bizarre decision for a global financial hub to pick a vendetta with a Senior Editor at the Financial Times.

A year ago I too was refused entry, having previously lived in Hong Kong, so I have some idea of how Mr Mallet must feel. This news is yet another example of the dramatic erosion of Hong Kong's freedoms and autonomy."

The news was announced on the same day that it emerged that a cultural venue run by a nonprofit organization with close ties to the Hong Kong government, Tai Kwun, abruptly canceled plans to host two events featuring an exiled Chinese writer, Ma Jian. On Friday 9th November, it emerged that a second venue had also refused him a platform.

Benedict Rogers said:

"A second venue no-platforming Ma Jian shows that the chilling effect from Victor Mallet’s visa ban and denial of entry is already being felt.

The last 24 hours have gravely undermined freedom of expression.”