Authorities have forced a reporter for The New York Times to leave China, a country where the man has lived for over a decade. Chinese officials have declined to issue the 2013 journalist visa requested by the reporter and his employer.
Chris Buckley, currently a correspondent for The New York Times, began working in mainland China 12 years ago. In September of 2012 the newspaper requested accreditation for Buckley from Chinese authorities. Their request was not granted despite repeated attempts to renew the annual media accreditation and residence visa.
Requests for accreditation like the one in this case are typically renewed within two months time. Buckley and The New York Times were not given reasons for the delay by Chinese officials.
Failure on the side of authorities to act in a timely manner resulted in the reporter’s visa expiring on December 31, 2012. The New York Times reports that the expired document forced Chris Buckley to vacate the mainland and fly to Hong Kong. He was accompanied by his partner and their daughter on the December 31 flight.
Buckley’s case comes at a sensitive time between China’s government and the foreign news press. Several reports detailing investigations into the wealth of Chinese officials have been written recently by some of the world’s top news organizations. China seemingly fired back by removing the country’s internet access to the news organizations’ websites, according to The Daily Mail.
The New York Times is continuing to request accreditation for Buckley and hopes his family will soon be allowed to return to their home in Beijing. Oddly enough, the reporter was forced out of China while the country’s new leader Xi Jinping currently has a daughter attending Harvard University in the United States.