China on Friday denied reports claiming it had rejected visa to a New York Times correspondent after the newspaper last year published articles critical of the Chinese Premier.
The Foreign Ministry said the former employers of the journalist, who joined NYT in October, had failed to submit the necessary paperwork for his visa, adding that it had not received notification from them saying he had joined the NYT .
The NYT had said on Monday that its correspondent Chris Buckley (45), a veteran Australian journalist who has reported out of China for more than a decade, had to fly out of the country after his visa was not renewed.
The newspaper said the Foreign Ministry had not commented on his departure, leading to suggestions that the move was a punishment for the newspaper’s recent investigation into the wealth of the relatives of Prime Minister Wen Jiabao.
Foreign Ministry sources here, however, pointed out that every other journalist in the NYT ’s bureau had their visa renewed, including the journalist who penned the Wen Jiabao article.
The Ministry hit out at media reports alleging it had expelled the journalist as a punishment, accusing “certain media” of “still looking at China through coloured lenses” and “reporting China with stereotypes”.