Beijing's secret plot to infiltrate UN used Australian insider......

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by Oddjob, Nov 11, 2018.

  1. Oddjob

    Oddjob Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    Can't say I'm surprised with the content of the article but did the SMH bury this re a Sunday night release rather than Monday am?

    Warning, get a cuppa before you start reading....it's not a short read.

    https://www.smh.com.au/world/asia/b...-used-australian-insider-20181031-p50d2e.html


    Beijing's secret plot to infiltrate UN used Australian insider

    • By Nick McKenzie, Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian, Zach Dorfman & Fergus Hunter

      11 November 2018

      Earlier this year, a petite 62-year-old woman dubbed the ‘‘queen of the Australian-China social scene’’ walked out of a US federal prison.

      Charming and gregarious, Sheri Yan was once known for hosting soirees around the world where diplomats mingled with millionaire business executives and socialites. But her life changed forever in October 2015, when she was arrested by FBI agents in New York and accused of bribing the former president of the United Nations General Assembly, John Ashe.
      Yan’s journey from one of China’s smallest provinces to the UN’s New York headquarters is itself extraordinary. Then the FBI’s case opened another window into her story – a sprawling saga of ambition, greed and power. The most intriguing chapter of this tale remains shrouded in mystery, with clues emerging across three continents – in court documents, phone tap warrants, and a spy agency raid. The clues, like a trail of breadcrumbs, all lead back to the same source. The Chinese Communist Party.According to 10 serving and former Australian and US national security officials, the Chinese government was conducting a clandestine foreign interference operation targeting the most prominent symbol of the global rules-based order: the UN. This bold operation used UN-approved non-government organisations (NGOs) with apparently charitable intentions as fronts for channelling illicit payments to UN diplomats – via a network of middlemen, millionaires and suspected spies. Yan was a key player, say some of these sources.

      In September, US prosecutors alluded to Yan’s secret involvement in a second high profile bribery case. This case involved claims that Hong Kong’s former Home Affairs minister, Patrick Ho, had bribed another UN general assembly president, Sam Kutesa. Kutesa’s wife once worked for Yan and phone taps suggest Yan and Ho were working together to exert corrupt influence inside the UN.

      Yan and Ho share other similarities. Yan has faced explosive accusations that she is an agent of Chinese government influence, having been raided by ASIO. Ho’s alleged connections to Beijing’s security apparatus involve a black market arms smuggling racket. The Chinese Communist Party hovers in the background of both Yan and Ho’s stories.When asked about Yan, Australian Attorney-General Christian Porter didn’t call out Beijing directly, but confirmed the UN had been targeted. ‘‘Ensuring political processes are conducted without improper influence is paramount for all political processes, from local council elections through to the running of the UN,’’ he said. ‘‘Examples demonstrate that this is a real problem.’’ Yan’s story shows why.

      A new Cold War
      On October 4, at the Hudson Institute in Washington DC, US Vice-President Mike Pence delivered a speech the impact of which is still being felt. Pence declared Beijing was interfering ‘‘in the domestic policies of this country’’ as part of a clandestine and systemic operation. The New York Times said some were calling the speech a portent of a ‘‘new cold war.’’
      Despite the scrutiny of Pence’s comments, few media outlets connected it to a major secret US national security report. This report underpinned Pence's sweeping assertions about the way Beijing's foreign interference operations are aimed at goverments, universities and businesses. Even less known was that the origins of this US report lay over the Pacific Ocean, in another highly classified project led by former senior Australian government official John Garnaut. The Garnaut report, written with ASIO, assessed the scale of Chinese government interference in Australia and, in July, prompted sweeping reforms of Australia’s national security laws. While he has declined to be interviewed about his work, Garnaut recently wrote in The Monthly about how the Communist Party’s United Front Work Department engages in foreign interference.

      To influence "foreign actors," Garnaut said United Front agencies sometimes engage in ‘‘covert operations aided by [Chinese] intelligence agencies."Before becoming a public servant, Garnaut knew Yan. As Fairfax Media’s highly regarded China correspondent, Garnaut broke the story of her arrest in October 2015. It was Garnaut who had dubbed Yan the ‘‘queen’’ of the Australia-China social scene.

      ‘‘Our paths had crossed both professionally and in Australian expatriate social circles,’’ Garnaut later wrote in a legal statement after he was sued by a businessman named in his Yan story. ‘‘I had gone to ... [Yan’s] house once because she was offering me entrée into elite Chinese political circles.’’ In his statement, Garnaut, described Yan as ‘‘a fixer/mediator/consultant’’ who likely moved in United Front circles.According to national security sources with knowledge of the Yan case, it was this same suspicion, along with the belief that Yan was somehow involved in intelligence work, that brought ASIO agents to her Canberra apartment in October 2015.

      A senior security official told Fairfax Media he considered Yan an agent of influence, a conduit to help Beijing meddle in the affairs of other countries. ‘‘Her motivation has been making money and as she got better at doing that, she became useful to Chinese government agencies,’’ the official said.Yan wasn’t home when ASIO came knocking. She was in New York, in the custody of the FBI, who were about to charge her with bribing John Ashe. In Canberra, the ASIO agents handed their search warrant to the man who had opened Yan’s front door and who they knew as one of their own: Yan’s husband, Roger Uren, a former Australian government intelligence official.

      Only 12 months earlier, Yan and Uren had helped Yan’s father, Yan Zhen, host a one man art exhibition at the UN’s New York headquarters to celebrate the transition of the UN General Assembly presidency from Ashe to Kutesa. The event was also a celebration of Yan’s own rise. She worked the crowd, at ease among the notables of the diplomatic world, including Ashe and UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon.Yan's arrest in New York and the raid on her Canberra property marked the beginning of a mortifying fall for a woman who was at the peak of her powers, mixing with the rich and powerful, flying business class and wearing designer clothes.

      From re-education to riches
      Sheri Yan was born Shiwie Yan in 1956 in Anhui province. She lived in a writers' compound with her father, a renowned poet and painter, mother and brother until the Cultural Revolution swept through China and her parents were sent to Mao’s feared re-education camps. Yan was 11 years old. She stayed in the compound to fend for herself, wearing her mother’s old clothes and receiving handouts from her former nanny. Four years later, Yan joined an arts and culture troupe run by Mao’s Red Guards. It would be another five years before she was finally reunited with her family.

      After studying to become a journalist, Yan worked for the Communist Party’s propaganda outlet China National Radio in Beijing and married her first husband. Wanting more, and with China’s economy opening up under President Deng Xiaoping, Yan took her first big risk. Her mother sewed $400 into the lining of her jacket and Yan flew to the US to work as a journalist and to learn English, leaving her husband and old life behind. It was in Washington DC where Yan’s connection to Australia was forged. There, she met Uren, an eccentric and erudite mid-career Australian diplomat who was writing a book about Mao’s feared spy chief Kang Sheng. The pair fell in love and she travelled with Uren to Canberra when he was posted to a senior role at Australia's peak intelligence agency, the Office of National Assessments. In 1996, they had a daughter.


      You'll need to click thru to article for the entire story as article is too long for this forum per thread post.
     
    Gullintanni, leo25, Skyrocket and 2 others like this.
  2. leo25

    leo25 Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    All this stuff is like a movie building up to a climax. So many things going down next year, I'm going to need a lot of popcorn.
     
  3. Ipv6Ready

    Ipv6Ready Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    Aussie politicians are some of the most corrupt and easily bribed. I doubt many Chinese politicians have taken as much as Obeid and Co
     
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  4. Gullintanni

    Gullintanni Well-Known Member

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    This has been in the news here in NZ as well.
    A disgruntled and mentally unwell (his term) politician by the name of Jami lee Ross had been recording all his interactions with other members of his party (National).
    One of the recordings he released after he was removed was with the leader of the party Simon Bridges and in it they discussed a $100K donation (from a ethnic Chinese businessman) and that it would be preferred to have extra Chinese ethnicity persons added to the party list as part of the donation.
    I will find a link and post it here.
    It is not really super dodgy as i personally feel NZ would not be the great country it is had it not been for Chinese settlers doing all the shit work THAT NEEDED DONE but many European settlers thought it beneath them.
    It would not surprise me at all to find it went all the way back to the government of China trying to gain influence as that is the smart thing to do.
    I mean the USA do it all the time, but their "donations" tend to arrive at many hundreds of kilometers an hour and explode upon arrival.
     
  5. Ipv6Ready

    Ipv6Ready Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    I think you're thinking too much of it. Most of these donaters are no different to any other political donater, be it property or whatever local contracts.

    They are trying to make money for themselves and why the F not if they have the money.

    How big is recycling in NZ, and over the last years how much have NZ largest recylers donate to be able to incinerate recyclables or dump it into landfill.

    Note vast majority of recyclables are burnt in China for fuel
     
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  6. Gullintanni

    Gullintanni Well-Known Member

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    You could very well be correct Ipv6.
    Here is a little bit of info about the guy that gave the donation.
    Just keep in mind he donated to a right leaning party and the journalist (cough cough) is heavily left leaning.
    https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2018/10/16/279660/zhang-yikun-and-the-alleged-100k-donation

    EDIT: When this all went down Zhang Yikan was not available for comment as he was in China taking the mayor of Southland District here in NZ on a free tour .
     
  7. raven

    raven Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    Actually, after first noticing the title of this thread, I seriously thought that "rudd the dudd" was going to be mentioned !
    We'll just have to stick with Downer, for now, I guess.
    :)
     
  8. Oddjob

    Oddjob Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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  9. Oddjob

    Oddjob Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    And this muppett thinks he can decide national security and foreign policy.

    Daniel Andrews releases details of Belt and Road agreement with China




    The Andrews government has released the memorandum of understanding it signed with China to join its multitrillion-dollar Belt and Road trade initiative.

    Labor released the MOU on Sunday evening, following heavy criticism from the Coalition, including Prime Minister Scott Morrison and former PM John Howard, for signing the deal and keeping its contents secret.

    [​IMG]
    Premier Daniel Andrews.Credit:AAP

    The four-page document, signed by Premier Daniel Andrews and Lifeng He, chairman of China’s National Development and Reform Commission, binds Victoria and China to no specific commitments.

    It states that Victoria and China will agree to co-operate on “facilities connectivity, unimpeded trade, financial co-operation, people-to-people bond, and promote Digital Silkroad co-operation”.

    Co-operation will occur in the form of dialogue, joint research, pilot programs, knowledge sharing and capacity building, the memorandum states.

    Labor signed the agreement with the Chinese government in early October but kept its details under wraps for weeks, arguing it was standard practice to keep such MOUs confidential.

    In a statement, the Andrews government said on Sunday that the MOU was not legally binding.

    “The MOU does not bind Victoria to be involved in any specific project or initiative,” the government said.

    “As it always does, the government will consider both the Victorian and national interest before agreeing to be involved in any specific activity.”

    Opposition Leader Matthew Guy previously said he would publish the MOU if he became premier.

    China’s Belt and Road Initiative is a vast infrastructure program aimed at building and improving trade routes between China and other parts of the world.

    It has been criticised for saddling some developing economies with large debts.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2018
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  10. Oddjob

    Oddjob Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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  11. JulieW

    JulieW Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    Opening the door for discussions with the "Next Empire" seems reasonable to me.

    The clowns in Canberra have been caught flat footed whilst they spent all their energies on "who is leader this week", and besides, if there was anything set in stone or significant about this, it would only be after permission from the Pentagon/CIA anyway.
     
  12. systematic

    systematic Well-Known Member

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    Voting encourages bad behaviour ...
     
  13. jultorsk

    jultorsk Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    Andrews has very foolishly put his hand in the dragon's mouth. He's got no idea what he's dealing with. This could be considered borderline treason.
     
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  14. JulieW

    JulieW Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    Fair go. It's just another version of a trade delegation memorandum.

    a person commits treason if he or she: causes the death or harm, resulting in death, imprisons or restrains. the Sovereign, the heir apparent of the Sovereign, the consort of the. Sovereign, the Governor-General or Prime Minister; levies war, or does an act preparatory to levying war against the against the Commonwealth
    Etc etc

    At a stretch you could call sedition but that's no longer illegal - we can pretty much call out the ratbags as we wish!
     
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  15. jultorsk

    jultorsk Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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  16. Oddjob

    Oddjob Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    Howard changed the laws around sedition in late 2005 (updated to a more modern version) and from memory ir was pushed through parliament PDQ as the AG had a few people lined up for a chat.

    In looking at the Act and noting that the Commonwealth Govt decides foreign policy and had decided not to take part in the PRC's BRI, then Andrews who has no authority to negotiate such matters could be in contravention of :

    Seditious Intention
    Section 24 defined a seditious intention as [a]n intention to effect any of the following purposes:

    (a) to bring the Sovereign into hatred or contempt;
    (d) to excite disaffection against the Government or Constitution of the Commonwealth or against either House of the Parliament of the Commonwealth;
    (f) to excite Her Majesty's subjects to attempt to procure the alteration, otherwise than by lawful means, of any matter in the Commonwealth established by law of the Commonwealth; or
    (g) to promote feelings of ill-will and hostility between different classes of Her Majesty's subjects so as to endanger the peace, order or good government of the Commonwealth;

    The same could be argued re the NT Govt that sold off / 99 year lease of the Darwin Port (civilian and naval ops there inc US Navy) to the PRC a few eyars back. The NT Chief Minister should have been locked up for that one.
     
  17. Ipv6Ready

    Ipv6Ready Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    China didnt buy Darwin Port, a Chinese company bought Darwin port. When BHP buys a mine in Chile, do you think Australia bought a mine?

    And whats the fuss with US navy, you realise US Navy refuels in HK, and Shanghai port when it visits ALL the time lol.

    Besides the the Chinese owners are likely bankrupt, so do you think China is bankrupt
     
  18. Oddjob

    Oddjob Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    Correct, not the PRC Govt but a private company. However chances of a private PRC company not doing the bidding of the PRC Govt when asked are low.

    Agreed, re the US Navy re HK, but why then is the US Govt DoD Navy spending billions in the top end / NW of Australia upgrading Aust military bases for free....The US don't want to be taking their ships into Darwin and are cautious re China's expansion in the region both physically, economically and politically.

    Are the owners "LandBridge" bankrupt??? Don't know but looks like a PRC owned bank may re-financed them last year. Is China bankrupt??? Maybe...their financial reporting not transparent and the PRC Govt control / influence of the markets is boundless....who knows.
     
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  19. Oddjob

    Oddjob Well-Known Member Silver Stacker

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    No 42 with black bean sauce.... Ms Bishop your order is ready.

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/wes...nd-advisor-s-appointment-20190224-p50zxe.html

    Julie Bishop denies any link between donation from elderly Chinese mogul and advisor's appointment


    A $50,000 donation was made to the WA Liberal Party by an elderly Chinese industrialist just days before one of his Australian business associates was appointed to a powerful diplomatic advisory board by former foreign minister Julie Bishop.

    Ms Bishop, who said on Thursday she would not contest the next election, announced the appointment of Sydney businesswoman Margaret Jack to the board of the Australia-China Council on December 12, 2016, after Hong Kong-based manufacturing mogul Sun Kin Chao deposited the cash into Liberal coffers on December 9.

    [​IMG]
    Former foreign minister Julie Bishop attends an Australia China Business Council (ACBC) networking event in 2018.Credit:Alex Ellinghausen

    Ms Jack is a director and shareholder of the Australian branch of Hong Kong-headquartered manufacturing multinational Kinox Enterprises, which was founded by the 99-year-old industrialist in the 1940s.

    Ms Jack and Kinox Enterprises are also significant donors to the NSW Liberal Party and the Nationals. Companies controlled by Ms Jack and the Sun family have donated $127,000 to the parties over the past decade in addition to the $50,000 WA donation.

    In November 2015, Ms Jack paid $4000 to the NSW Liberal Party to attend a dinner with Ms Bishop and North Sydney MP Trent Zimmerman at La Grillade Restaurant in Crows Nest.

    Mr Sun's businesses are now controlled by his son and grandson, who are both closely connected to the ruling Chinese regime.

    [​IMG]
    Sydney businesswoman Margaret Jack was a director of Kinox Enterprises Pty Ltd when manufacturing mogul Sun Kin Chao – also a director – made the donation to the WA Liberals.Credit:Swiss Centers China

    His son, Sun Kai Lit – also known as Cliff Sun – is a director and shareholder of the family's Australian company Kinox Enterprises Pty Ltd, along with Ms Jack.

    The contact details of his grandson, Eric Sun, who is managing director of Kinox in Hong Kong, were detailed in the document declaring the $50,000 donation to the Australian Electoral Commission.


    Ms Jack is also a director of Rougem Pty Ltd, a Sun family controlled company that sold a $26 million Parramatta office block in 2017.

    Sun Kai Lit was a member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference and is a director of an influential United Front Work Department organisation called the Shenzhen Overseas Chinese International Association SOCIA.

    The United Front is overseen by the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee and leads the party’s operations aimed at influencing overseas Chinese and Western elites, including politicians, to back Beijing's aims.


    He is also listed as an honorary president of the Federation of Australian Shenzhen Community, which is chaired by controversial billionaire Huang Xiangmo whose bid for Australian permanent residency was recently knocked back on character grounds.

    The Australia-China Council was set up in the 1970s to promote "person-to-person" relations between Australians and Chinese and oversees a grants program for economic diplomacy, education, or arts and culture projects in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macau and Australia.


    Ms Bishop said she had no relationship with the Sun family and the $50,000 donation was unrelated to the appointment of Ms Jack.

    "Donations to the WA Liberal Party are handled by the party administration," she said.


    "Ms Jack was appointed due to her long-standing involvement with the Australia-China business community and her international business expertise.

    "Bilateral councils and institute board members are appointed by the Foreign Minister from a list of candidates whose skills and experience are assessed as likely to benefit and enhance a bilateral relationship.


    "The process of identifying, selecting and appointing Council members takes many months with input from numerous areas within the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade."

    Ms Jack did not answer questions about the donation to the WA Liberal party and denied any connection to the Chinese Communist Party's United Front Work Department.

    "I am very proud to be an Australian," she said.

    "I am known for my extensive China business knowledge stemming from many years of occupying senior positions in major multinationals operating in China.

    "I have never worked with any organisations directly or indirectly dealing with the United Front Work Department and I do not intend to."


    Ms Bishop said she recalled launching Mr Zimmerman's byelection campaign for the seat of North Sydney in November 2015 and attending a dinner afterwards.

    "I have no recollection of meeting Ms Jack that evening," she said.

    "I have no knowledge of any donations in relation to the North Sydney campaign."

    The former foreign minister said the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade undertook extensive consultation, which included background checks, to identify potential Australia-China Council board members.


    "Shortlisted candidates were chosen for their contributions to Australia’s relationship with China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan and have expertise in arts and culture, education or economic diplomacy," Ms Bishop said.

    WA Liberal Party state director Sam Calabrese said: "The Morrison Government has taken action to protect the integrity of Australia’s electoral system by legislating a ban on foreign political donations, which came into effect on January 1".

    "The Liberal Party fully complies with this ban and all other laws relating to donations," he said.

    The Sun family did not respond to requests for comment

     
  20. systematic

    systematic Well-Known Member

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    If you want to know what's really going on ... ALWAYS follow the money ...
     

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