A Taiwanese LGBT publisher was forced by organizers of a major Hong Kong book expo to stop selling several books last week.
The publisher, G Books, criticised the Hong Kong Book Fair for its ban on “indecent” titles as the books in question contained neither nudity nor violence, according to a Saturday Facebook post.
The post said organisers ordered a total of nine titles to be removed from the stall, despite the fact that they were packaged in plastic covers featuring warning labels in accordance with Hong Kong laws.
“We’ve never been faced with this kind of order in previous exhibitions,” wrote the publisher. “We felt extremely stunned.”
“An annual cultural publishing fair in the ‘Pearl of the Orient’… does not permit diversity of speech. Publishers cannot reach their readers in a proud way, without twisting or disguising themselves.”
“The Book Fair suddenly gave its order on the third day of the fair – we managed to sell the books on the first two days,” a G Books spokesperson told HKFP. “This is really unreasonable. Some say that a Christian stall nearby filed a complaint against us, but we can’t prove it.”
The banned titles included A Gentleman’s Wedding, Gay Soldier’s Diary, and Crying Girls.
“Please continue to help minorities make their voices heard,” wrote Hong Kong Democratic Party legislator Roy Kwong in a comment on G Books’ Facebook page, according to Hong Kong Free Press.