Australia Warns China over Espionage

15 Jul 2009 10:29

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd weighs in with words of condemnation for China over its arrest of an Australian national on charges of threatening economic security with espionage. Rudd warned China on Tuesday that it would lose a major economic partner should the country pursue the espionage case. “A range of foreign governments and corporations will be watching this case with interest and be watching it very closely, and will be drawing their own conclusions as to how it is conducted,” Rudd said. The Australian premier was speaking nearly ten days after Australian national Stern Hu, the head of China operations at multinational mining company Rio Tinto, was arrested in Shanghai along with several other Rio employees on charges of harming the economic security of the state. “Australia of course has significant economic interests in its relationship with China,” Rudd continued. “But I also want to remind our Chinese friends that China too has significant economic interests at stake in its relationship with Australia and with its other commercial partners around the world.” Chinese authorities insist that bilateral ties are “very important” and that the Rio Tinto case will not affect its relations with Australia.

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