Governments may increase their espionage efforts in China in response to weakening transparency from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leadership, according to an Australian defence expert.
Michael Shoebridge, director at Strategic Analysis Australia, made the comments as attention focuses on the CCP’s espionage interference overseas.
“As Xi Jinping closes China to foreign journalists and academics and makes it harder for foreign businesses to operate there, there will be an increasing drive by other countries’ government agencies to get sources inside Chinese institutions and organisations,” he wrote in an email to The Epoch Times on Sept. 12.
CCP Spy Found in UK Parliament
The comments come after a UK Parliament researcher was arrested on suspicions of “spying for China” and is alleged to have fed information to Beijing through his position as a researcher for a member of Parliament.
The report said the man had high-level security clearance and had helped shape the UK’s China policy.
Following the report, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak told broadcasters at the G20 summit in New Delhi that he had raised “a range of different concerns” with Chinese Premier Li Qiang, including his “very strong concerns about any interference in [the UK’s] parliamentary democracy, which is obviously unacceptable.”
Australian Policymakers Warn About Foreign Interference
Labor MP Peter Khalil, the chair of parliament’s intelligence and security committee, has warned Australians to remain “vigilant” against foreign interference.
“People really have to be aware and be vigilant of those attempts,” Mr. Khalil told ABC radio on Sept. 12.
“The security agencies and the intelligence agencies are responsible for the vetting of staff.
“It’s a pretty deep dive … and that occurs with across departments and the government and the parliament.”