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China has effectively expelled a New York Times journalist after newspaper exposed the substantial private wealth of the nation's outgoing leaders.
Australian-born Chris Buckley, 45, says his visa has not been renewed for the next year. He told the South China Morning Post, after arriving in Hong Kong with his family:
"The situation is that I was working for Reuters until October and then I took a new job with the New York Times. The visa that I was on was granted when I was working for Reuters, and I was in Beijing waiting for the Chinese authorities to grant me a new visa and accreditation to work for the New York Times. As of today, there was no word of approval."
In October, the New York Times revealed earlier that outgoing Premier Wen Jiabao's family was among the richest in the world.
“A review of corporate and regulatory records indicates that the prime minister’s relatives – some of whom, including his wife, have a knack for aggressive deal making – have controlled assets worth at least $US2.7 billion,” the Times reported.
The Times’ executive editor, Jill Abramson, says the newspaper made repeated requests for the Chinese government to renew his journalist visa.
She says she hopes authorities will issue him a new visa soon so he and his family can return to Beijing.
She says a journalist visa also has been denied for Philip Pan, who is designated to serve as the newspaper's bureau chief in Beijing.
In May, Al-Jazeera journalist Melissa Chan was expelled from China after reporting on horrific labour camp conditions.