Alleged Chinese Involvement in Australian Internal Affairs 'Disturbing' - Canberra
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday that the alleged Chinese involvement in the internal affairs of his country was "disturbing" and "troubling," but urged the public to not jump to conclusions.
"I would caution anyone leaping to any conclusions about these matters … I'm not. But I do find the allegations troubling and disturbing," Morrison said at a press conference on Monday, as quoted by Channel Nine.
In his speech, the prime minister emphasized the government's readiness to keep Australians free and safe from any foreign interference.
On Sunday, the Australian Channel Nine broadcaster reported that Chinese operatives allegedly offered $1 million to Nick Zhao, an Australian liberal party member, to run for the federal parliament seat in the division of Chisholm in Victoria state. Zhao then reportedly told the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) about the deal. In March, he was found dead in his hotel room in Melbourne.
Apart from that, Australia's The Sydney Morning Herald news outlet and The Age daily reported on Saturday that suspected Chinese spy Wang "William" Liqiang had informed the ASIO about alleged Chinese interference in Australia, Taiwan and Hong Kong. Wang has requested protection from the Australian government.
Beijing claims that Wang is a fraudster and is wanted by China's police forces.
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