Articles on Espionage

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Foreign Minister Marise Payne has made clear that Yang Hengjun was not spying on behalf of Australia, but it may matter little in China, where the conviction rate is more than 99%. Bianca de Marchi/AAP

Yang Hengjun’s legal prospects in China appear grim, despite Australia’s forceful defences

The detained writer is entitled to Australian consular access while in prison in China, but like other detained Chinese-Australians, Canberra has few other legal options to help him.
Protesters outside the Australian embassy in Dili, Timor-Leste, in 2016, demanding a settlement of the border dispute between the nations. Antonio Dasiparu/EPA

After a border dispute and spying scandal, can Australia and Timor-Leste be good neighbours?

Since Timor-Leste's independence, relations with Australia have been undermined by contentious negotiations over oil and gas fields. But a new maritime border may mean brighter days ahead.
Dr Yang has been held in Beijing under harsh conditions, without access to lawyers or family for more than seven months before being formally arrested. Shutterstock

Foreign Minister Marise Payne says Yang Hengjun is not Australian spy

Outspoken Australian-Chinese democracy advocate Dr Yang Hengjun has been formally arrested in China on suspicion of spying, further straining relations between the two countries.

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