Reporters Without Borders (RSF), a Paris-based journalism advocacy group, has urged the European Union to impose sanctions on Chinese state media for their broadcasts and reports of “forced confessions” by detainees.
The call came after China Central Television (CCTV) on Tuesday aired footage of a purported confession by Swedish rights activist Peter Dahlin, who had been detained by Chinese authorities earlier this month on charges of threatening state security.
The official Xinhua news agency also published quotes from the video.
“We are outraged by the dissemination of forced ‘confessions’ that have no informational value,” Agence France-Presse quoted Benjamin Ismail, an Asia-based campaigner for RSF, as saying in a statement.
“By knowingly peddling lies and statements presumably obtained under duress, CCTV and Xinhua become mass propaganda weapons and cease de facto to be news media,” he said.
On Monday, CCTV aired a video of Hong Kong bookseller Gui Minhai, a naturalized Swedish citizen, who had been missing since October last year.
In the video, Gui was shown confessing to a 2003 China drink-driving offence and that he doesn’t want Stockholm to interfere with his case.
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