Lu Guang, a Politically Engaged Photojournalist Went Missing After his Arrest

Chinese photojournalist Lu Guang was arrested on November 3rd by State Security and hasn’t been heard from since, his wife told AFP.

Lu Guang is a committed photographer, whose work has addressed the facets of Chinese society that the government would rather not see exposed.

A former worker who became a freelance photographer, Lu Guang has received many awards during his 25-year career. His work on villagers who were infected with the AIDS virus through paid blood draws earned him a World Press Photo award in 2004.

Worker in Wuhai City, Inner Mongolia. April 10, 2005. Image ©Lu Guang

“The reality in China is that you never know if you’re going to get in trouble because there are no written rules,” Lu Guang said in an interview last year.

A young girl warms her hands in winter. Her father is infected with HIV and still cares for five children and his elderly parents. ©Lu Guang
Many factories have been moved from the country’s east to its central and western parts. Employees work in the dust. ©Lu Guang

Cedric Alviani, director of the East Asia Bureau of Reporters Without Borders, said that it was “the Chinese state’s responsibility to ensure the free movement and safety of journalists, including in Xinjiang province”, and asked the Chinese authorities to “shed light on Lu Guang’s fate.”

Two girls prepare for the funeral of their six-year-old brother, who died from AIDS. ©Lu Guang

As a reminder, in the 2018 World Press Freedom Index published by Reporter Without Borders, China ranks 176th out of 180.