For the second rendition of our new monthly dinner event, we have lined up an exclusive, members-only dinner with veteran journalist Ching Cheong, a Hong Kong native best known for being jailed for 1000 days for his investigation into the memoirs of a late Chinese leader. His wife Mary Lau, another veteran journalist, will be joining us as well. Last month, we had our first T-12 dinner with the New York Times’ correspondent Chris Buckley.
We have 10 seats available at our table for twelve. See details below.
Reply with your RSVP to aajahk(at)gmail.com to secure your spot. Please consider yourself committed once you RSVP. If you are a no-show, then you may be stopping a fellow AAJA member from joining who has also shown interest. We will also have a waiting list. We will all split the bill to treat Ching and Lau as our guest.
See details below. See you next Tuesday!
A bio of Ching from his book, My 1000 Day’s Ordeal.
Journalists are always taught to cover the news, and not become the news. On April 21, 2005, Straits Times correspondent Ching Cheong broke that rule: he crossed the border into Shenzhen to investigate a manuscript of the memoirs of the late Chinese leader, Zhao Ziyang. That was the start of his nightmare. The next day, he was detained in isolation for more than three months, as the Public Security Bureau tried all manner of ways short of physical violence to get him to confess to spying for Taiwan. He was later “tried” in a Beijing court, his 20,000-word so-called “confession” the only evidence the State Prosecutor produced, and was summarily convicted of spying for “foreign powers” and sentenced to five years’ jail. His book re-counts in detail the emotional turmoil he felt at being “betrayed” by his desire to see China and Taiwan peacefully reunified, the tortuous circumstances under which he was compelled to write a “confession” of his alleged crime, and his struggle to come to terms with what he – albeit unwittingly – brought upon himself. He decided to write it “to contribute in a small way to wiping out the soil that produces such miscarriages of justice” in China, to make sure that he “had not gone to jail for nothing”.
Bio of Mary Lau: Lau graduated from the University of Hong Kong. After joining the Hong Kong Wen Wei Po, she was offered a scholarship to study in the International Institute of Journalism in Berlin. She worked in the newspaper’s London Office for a short time before she was sent to work as resident correspondent for its Beijing Bureau in early 1980’s. Then she joined the Office of Public Affairs of Hong Kong University of Science & Technology in the 90’s working as Media Officer. She has started her own consultancy firm and now working as Marketing Manager for the Hong Kong Office of World Scientific Publishing Co., Singapore.
Join AAJA for a small-group conversation over dinner with Ching and Lau, where we’ll discuss their ordeal and discuss the current situation for Hong Kong journalists.
Date: Tuesday, December 3rd
Time: 7:30 pm
Jiang Shan Xiao
SHOP 2B, 1/F, Retail Podium, Lippo Centre, 89 Queensway, Admiralty