Ambassador refused entry as Australian author faces trial for China espionage

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Australia’s Ambassador to China Graham Fletcher attempted to enter the Beijing No. 2 Intermediate People’s Court in accordance with the two-way consular agreement.

Fletcher said, “Unfortunately we have been denied entry to court. The cause was an epidemic but the Ministry of External Affairs also told us that it is a matter of national security so we are not allowed to attend it.” Outside the court

“It is deeply regrettable and concerning and unsatisfactory. We have long had concerns about this matter, including a lack of transparency, and therefore have concluded that this is an example of arbitrary detention.”

Details of the case have been kept secret, no information has been released that the detective agency Yang has been accused of taking action. If convicted, Yang faces a prison sentence of 10 years or more on charges of endangering national security.

Yang is an Australian citizen born in China who was immediately residing in New York. Before being detained in China.

Australia reprimanded the Chinese embassy in the Australian capital Canberra on Saturday, complaining that Chinese authorities had not provided “any explanation or evidence for the allegations”.

Human rights advocates will represent Mo Shaoping and Shang Baojun Yang when he appears in Thursday’s proceedings in a Beijing court, which was closed to the public.

The police lined up in front of the court, their presence spans a block away, and checked the identities of journalists who were denied entry.

Yang’s wife, Yuan Xiaoliang, who has been unable to see the couple since being detained at the southern airport of Guangzhou in January 2019, applied to attend the hearing, but was rejected, friends told Reuters Told.

In her last message to family and friends in Australia before the hearing, Yang said her health had deteriorated in March, but she should not worry as she “has no fear”.

According to a copy of the message seen by Reuters, “If someone wants to take revenge on me for my writing, please explain to people inside China what I did, and the importance of my writing to people in China.”

Fletcher said that it is possible that the verdict will be delivered on Thursday, or a separate verdict may be heard.

Australian Foreign Minister Maris Payne said on Thursday that Yang’s correspondence with her family in Australia was “deeply moving” and that it has been “extremely difficult” for her.

Australia wanted a “transparent and open process”, Payne told ABC Radio.

“We are not interfering with China’s legal system. The concerns we have raised are legitimate,” she said.

Diplomatic relations between the two countries have deteriorated rapidly since Yang was detained, with China imposing trade restrictions on production from Australia and reacting angrily to its call for an international investigation into the origin of coronovirus, as well Also imposed 5G ban on telecom giant Huawei. .

Yang wrote online about Chinese and American politics as a high-profile blogger, and also wrote a series of detective novels.

His January 2019 detention came at a time when the Chinese police cracked down on possible foreign intervention and crackdown on the “color revolution”.

Yang was previously arrested in 2011 on suspicion of involvement in the short-lived “Jasmine Revolution” protest in China and was released after three days.

He wrote in a letter to his supporters in Australia after his release that he worked for the Chinese State Security Agency in Hong Kong and Washington before moving to Australia in 1999.

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