(BEIJING) — Two South Korean photojournalists in China to cover a state visit of their country’s president were beaten by Chinese security guards in Beijing, according to media reports and sources.
The violence occurred at a trade show called the South Korea-China Economic and Trade Partnership as press were trying to get a closer photo of South Korean President Moon Jae-in, according to journalists who were present and press reports.
After members of the media reportedly complained that excessive protection was blocking their access to President Moon, a group of Chinese guards started pushing, punching and kicking a photojournalist who had fallen to the ground, according to media reports and a journalist at the event who spoke to ABC News.
Another South Korean journalist was also injured by Chinese guards at the event, according to South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency.
A 56-second video shot by the press pool and provided to ABC News shows a man yelling in Korean to the Chinese guards, “Don’t touch,” and “Stop.”
Someone at the scene is also heard calling out, “Do not kick him.”
Both of the injured photojournalists required medical treatment.
South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha delivered a formal complaint on the incident to the Chinese Foreign Ministry.
A spokesman for China’s foreign ministry noted that South Korea as the host of the trade show had arranged to have Chinese guards at the event.
“Although it was organized by South Korea, [the incident] took place in China, so we are paying it major attention,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu-Kang said at a regular briefing on Friday.
Some South Korean civic organizations including media-related associations are calling for an investigation of the incident.
President Moon was attending the event to foster trade relations between the two countries during his 4-day state visit.
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