Via The Australian:
Former foreign minister Bob Carr has slammed the reasons authorities have given businessman Huang Xiangmo for cancelling his visa, saying they were “flimsy” and “loose”.
Mr Huang, who is stranded overseas, yesterday released a statement about the decision and a reporter who spoke to him said ASIO had made the call stating he was “amenable to conducting acts of foreign interference”.
Mr Carr said it was “impossible to assess” whether Mr Huang should not be allowed to continue to reside in Australia where he lives with his family in a Mosman mansion in Sydney.
“The evidence behind the decision is not publicly available. Certainly no one should be excluded from Australia on the flimsy and subjective argument that they might be ‘amenable’ to foreign influence,” he said.
“Loose language like that can be used to kick anyone born overseas out of Australia.”
It’s a fair point and I wouldn’t want to see it become commonplace. But we also can’t ignore the irony of “Beijing Bob” Carr. He gave up any credibility on these questions by taking Huang’s dough for a China biased think tank in the first place.
Meanwhile, why doesn’t “Beijing Bob” use his considerable Chinese influence to help the Aussie residents in Chinese re-education camps instead? At The Guardian:
Seventeen Australian residents are believed to be under house arrest, in prison or detained in China’s secretive “re-education” centres in Xinjiang, the Guardian can reveal.
The 17 cases – 15 Australian permanent residents and two on spouse visas – have been collected by Nurgul Sawut, an advocate for Uighurs in Australia, through interviews with their family members.
The individuals are believed to have been detained while on trips to China visiting relatives. Many have children or spouses who are Australian citizens.
It is difficult to confirm their fates, given the secretive nature of the camps, but Sawut believes one of the group is in prison, four are under house arrest, and the remaining 12 are in detention centres.
Advocates for Australia’s 3,000-strong Uighur community are calling on the government in Canberra to secure the release of the detainees. Shadow foreign minister, Penny Wong, has urged the government to investigate.
At the same time, members of Australia’s Uighur population have reported serious harassment by Chinese authorities on Australian soil, including intimidating phone calls and requests to send over personal data, with the threat of reprisals against family if they do not comply.
After all, freeing our imprisoned is essential to good relations, eh Bob?