Copies of the local Apple Daily newspaper in Hong Kong (file photo). Photograph:( AFP )
After the arrests of its staff over China's draconian national security law, the Hong Kong-based Apple Daily decided to publish 500,000 copies, instead of their daily circulation number of 80,000
A day after Hong Kong forces arrested five executives of Apple Daily, the pro-democracy newspaper has carried out a front-page reading, "we must press on".
The large-sized message came a day after the local forces marched into the office of Apple Daily to conduct a raid in the newsroom and came out after arresting five executives, including chief editor Ryan Law and CEO Cheung Kim-hung.
When the staff members were reluctantly allowed to enter back the newsrooms, they found that several computers and hard drives were taken away by police officers in evidence bags.
However, the reporters spent the night in the newsrooms working on a ‘defiant’ edition with the main story reading, "National security police searched Apple, arrested five people, seized 44 news material hard disks".
The reporters circled other media personnel around the city and interviewed them about the alarming decline in freedom of the press and decided to publish 500,000 copies, instead of their daily circulation number of 80,000.
It was not just the employees of Apple Daily but also locals who were seen excited about the special issue and several people lined up at newsstands early in the morning to get their copies, Stands around the city reported that the edition of Apple Daily was ‘all sold out' as some people bought nearly 10 copies describing it to be a ‘unique’ news outlet.
This is being seen as a win against China’s Communist Party which has tried to control and silence the pro-democracy voices in Hong Kong and has also extended prison sentence for the owner of Apple Daily, the media tycoon Jimmy Lai.