LONDON/BEIJING, Nov 28 (Reuters) - The BBC said Chinese police had assaulted one of its journalists covering a protest in the commercial hub of Shanghai and detained him for several hours, drawing criticism from Britain's government which described his detention as "shocking".
China disputed the account and said the journalist had not identified himself as a reporter.
"The BBC is extremely concerned about the treatment of our journalist Ed Lawrence, who was arrested and handcuffed while covering the protests in Shanghai," the British public service broadcaster said in a statement late on Sunday.
"He was held for several hours before being released. During his arrest, he was beaten and kicked by the police. This happened while he was working as an accredited journalist."
Protesters have taken to the streets of Shanghai, Beijing and other cities in recent days to demonstrate against heavy COVID-19 measures, a show of civil disobedience that is unprecedented since leader Xi Jinping assumed power.
In Beijing, a foreign ministry spokesman said the BBC's statement did not reflect what had happened. "According to our understanding, the BBC's statement is not true," spokesman Zhao Lijian said.
"According to authorities in Shanghai, the journalist in question did not reveal his journalist identity at the time, he did not openly show his foreign press card," he added.
"When the incident happened, law enforcement personnel asked people to leave, and when certain people did not co-operate, they were taken away from the scene."... (Read more)
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