The pro-democracy newspaper Apple Daily has stopped publishing in the face of government repression in Hong Kong. Several journalists including the owner and the chief editor have been detained. This time another journalist Fung Wei-kong has been added to the list.
He was an editor and columnist for the defunct Apple Daily. Police arrested him at the Hong Kong airport on Sunday night, local time, according to media reports.
A statement from police said a senior journalist had been detained. The 56-year-old man was arrested at the airport on charges of conspiring with foreign and foreign powers to endanger national security. He has been detained and an investigation is underway.
Although police did not provide a name, Hong Kong media reported the name of the arrested person as Fung Wei-kong. When the news was confirmed, the Hong Kong administration arrested seven senior Apple Daily journalists with Fung under the National Security Act.
However, Reuters neutral sources could not confirm the news of Fung’s arrest. Phung could not be reached for comment. It was not immediately clear if he had a lawyer.
The Hong Kong government did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The most popular tabloid in Hong Kong is Apple Daily. The magazine had been published for about 26 years. The magazine was vocal in its criticism of the rulers of China and Hong Kong. Apple Daily has been hit hard in recent times.
Hong Kong police conducted an operation on June 17 in the Apple Daily Office. It was the first police raid on a newspaper office in Hong Kong alleging violations of national security laws. On that day, 500 members of the police entered the newsroom of the newspaper.
They searched journalists’ computers and notebooks and arrested five executives. The campaign was another major blow to influential Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai, owner of the Apple Daily tabloid and a fierce critic of Beijing’s policies.
His property has been confiscated under China’s National Security Act and he is currently serving a prison sentence for participating in illegal rallies.
According to police, the tabloid has published more than a dozen reports since 2019, violating Hong Kong’s security laws. However, they did not specify when the latest report was published.