The websites of the Next Media Group in Hong Kong and Taiwan today reported that they came under persistent and crippling cyber-attacks. It would appear that these were concerted efforts to silence a key component of the free press in this region. The malicious cyber attacks began at 2.45 am and continued till 3 pm today.
There is no question that these attacks were malicious and aimed specifically at the most outspoken component of what remains of the region’s unfettered media. Next Media’s Hong Kong website attracts more than 2 million users each day. The HKJA is, therefore, deeply concerned over this blatant interference in the freedom of the press and the malicious attempt to deprive the public of its right to know what is going at this critical juncture of Hong Kong’s political and economic development.
It bears repeating that Hong Kong is ruled by law. Under the laws of Hong Kong such blatant and malicious attacks are illegal. They are criminal acts and they are deliberately undertaken to interfere with the freedom of the press. They are also blatant acts to deprive the public of its right to know what is happening at this critical juncture of Hong Kong’s development. The HKJA, therefore, urges the police to thoroughly investigate this incident and to apprehend the culprit or culprits as soon as possible.
Hong Kong Journalists Association
June 18, 2014