Embassy of the People's Republic of China in Sweden
115 25 Stockholm
Regarding the Swedish journalist Kurdo Baksi
The Swedish Union of Journalists has noted that the Chinese embassy on two occasions recently has commented on articles written by the Swedish journalist and publisher Kurdo Baksi. The Swedish Union of Journalists is the first to point out that journalists should always be prepared for being questioned. The fact that the embassy choses to comment on Kurdo Baksi’s articles is nothing unusual per se. For organizations to use their own platforms to question a certain publication which they disagree with is nothing remarkable and it is not something that the Swedish Union of Journalists can do anything about since all organizations have the right to express their opinion in a democracy like Sweden.
However, The Swedish Union of Journalists finds it unacceptable that the Chinese embassy choses to smear Kurdo Baksi and to portray him as a liar instead of answering the questions that Kurdo Baksi raises in his articles. For example, Baksi points out the fact that the Chinese government won’t give information about Gui Minhais whereabouts. Instead of giving more information on this issue the embassy insinuates that Baksi is lying about the presence of underground prisons in China even though human rights organizations have established that these prisons exist.
The Swedish Union of Journalists is known for protecting the freedom of expression and we often do so even when we don’t agree with the message just because the principle is so important for our democracy. But the Swedish Union of Journalists will not stand and watch when the right to freedom of expression that we have fought for is used to pursue something resembling a smear campaign against a journalist. Kurdo Baksi is not only a journalist and publisher, he is also a person known for his engagement in protecting human rights by highlighting cases where colleagues are imprisoned for criticizing governments – colleagues such as Gui Minhai. The Swedish Union of Journalists condemn the Chinese Embassy’s attack against Kurdo Baksi.
Swedish Union of Journalists