Australian Politician’s Office Raided “Amid China Probe”

  • Currently, Moselmane has not faced any criminal charges, and the specific reasons for the investigation are still unclear.
  • Earlier, Moselmane said that Xi Jinping showed "unswerving leadership" and determination in controlling COVID-19.
  • He had privately visited China nine times since becoming a state legislator.

Jodi McKay, leader of the New South Wales Labor Party, said on Friday that media reports that raids on the home and office of fellow NSW politician Shaoquett Moselmane involved possible allegations of Chinese government interference were “dreadfully concerning.” His Sydney residence was searched and a warrant was also issued for his parliamentary office.

Shaoquett Moselmane is an Australian politician is a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council since 2009, and was a member of the parliamentary Australian Labor Party until 2020. His controversial links to China have been investigated since at least 2019.

The Australian Federal Police confirmed the news, stating that Moselmane’s Sydney residence was searched for investigation purposes, not because its residence may pose a threat to the surrounding communities. “This investigation needs to run its course. He will not sit in our caucus,” McKay told reporters on Friday.

Currently, Moselmane has not faced any criminal charges, and the specific reasons for the investigation are still unclear. The Australian state politician did not comment to the media on Friday.

Praised Xi Jinping

In April this year, Moselmane resigned from the post of Assistant President of the Legislative Council. Earlier, he had loudly praised China’s national epidemic prevention measures, saying that Xi Jinping showed “unswerving leadership” and determination.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported that Moselmane had visited China privately nine times since he entered the state legislature in 2009. The disclosed records show that the cost of air tickets and accommodation are often sponsored by Chinese government officials or agencies.

According to the Australian media, Moselmane is the honorary chairman of the Shanghai Association of Australia, and a founding member and former senior vice chairman of the Chinese Association of Australia.

The Chinese official media “Zhongxin” reported on Moselmane in May 2018, which mentioned that he emphasized that “Chinese communities should be respected,” and said that Moselmane has been committed to the work of the Chinese community for many years.

An article in China News in October 2019 mentioned that Moselmane was a “China Connect,” born in southern Lebanon, and moved to Australia with his family when he was 12 years old.

Labor Party Temporarily Suspends Membership

New South Wales Labor Party Leader McKay said the search surprised her. “It’s very worrying, it’s terrible,” McKay said. She also said that the expectation of the parliamentarians is that whatever they do should be in the best interests of the people.

McKay said, “I hope that every member of Parliament-not only the members of the Labor Party, but also the Liberal Party, the National Party, and the horizontal members [neutral seats] will take this as their core action.”

The Leader of the Opposition in NSW also said that Moselmane has been temporarily removed from his party membership and will no longer participate in the Labor Parliament meeting.

Morrison: External Interference will Never be Tolerated

Scott John Morrison, nicknamed ScoMo, is an Australian politician who is the 30th and current Prime Minister of Australia and Leader of the Liberal Party since August 2018. He previously served in the Cabinet from 2013 to 2018, including as Treasurer of Australia.

Scott Morrison, the Australian Prime Minister from the Liberal Party, said that he has been investigating interference for a while. “The government is absolutely determined to ensure that nobody interferes with Australia’s activities,” he said. “We will stand up to it. And we will take action, as what you’ve seen today demonstrates.”

Australian Federal Attorney General Christian Porter said that spying and foreign intervention would threaten Australia’s national security. He said in a statement, “Ii is worth mentioning that the Australian government is very concerned about activities in this field and has thoroughly revised the laws on espionage, foreign intervention, and foreign influence.”

Australia passed the Anti-foreign Intervention Act 2018.

China-Australian Relations

In recent weeks, China-Australia relations have become increasingly tense. Before that, China issued an import ban on Australia’s largest beef slaughtering companies, raised tariffs on Australian barley, and warned citizens not to travel to Australia. Many of these Chinese actions were interpreted as Beijing’s retaliation for Canberra’s request for an independent investigation into the origin and spread of the new coronavirus.

[bsa_pro_ad_space id=4]

Joyce Davis

My history goes back to 2002 and I  worked as a reporter, interviewer, news editor, copy editor, managing editor, newsletter founder, almanac profiler, and news radio broadcaster.

Leave a Reply