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Labor accepted £ 700,000 from suspected Chinese spy: report

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Labor accepted £ 700,000 from suspected Chinese spy: report

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Christine Lee, the alleged Chinese Communist spy, is said to have donated more than £ 700,000 to the left-wing Labor Party in Britain as part of a campaign of “political interference” orchestrated by Beijing.

On Thursday it was revealed that MI5 had contacted House of Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle, warning that “British Chinese Project” founder Christine Lee had worked to engage with Members of Parliament to ” subvert the process of “democracy.”

The main target of the alleged espionage plot centered on former Socialist Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn, MP for Barry Gardiner.

Lee donated nearly £ 700,000 in political contributions to Labor, according to The sun, the vast majority of which went straight to the coffers of former Blair-era minister and Corbyn-era shadow cabinet member Barry Gardiner. Mr Gardiner is said to have received more than £ 500,000 from Ms Lee over a six-year period.

Beyond the financial investment, it was also revealed that the Labor MP was employing the son of the alleged Chinese spy until Thursday morning, when he claims he was first informed by security services that Ms Lee was a spy agent.

“I then went and immediately contacted his son who worked in my office as the diary manager and asked him to submit his resignation immediately, which he did,” Mr. Gardiner at Sky News.

“But I want to point out to you that the security services told me that they had no information to suggest that he was aware of his mother’s illegal activity.”

Mr Gardner admitted that he had “spoken openly and frankly” with UK intelligence services “for several years” about his relationship with Ms Lee. However, he claimed that he was never told to sever ties with the suspected spy and said there was “no evidence” that the money she gave him came from the regime. Beijing.

The Labor MP went on to suggest that his past criticisms of the Chinese Communist Party on issues such as climate change and human rights demonstrate that he is not beholden to China.

The Chinese Communist Party has previously targeted left-wing politicians in the same way, including California Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein, who allegedly employed a Chinese spy as a driver for twenty years.

Lee, the founder of the non-profit association “British Chinese Project”, which aims to “promote engagement, understanding and cooperation between the Chinese community and British society at large”, has actively collaborated with heavyweights across the political spectrum in Britain. .

The alleged spy was pictured with former Labor Party leader Socialist Jeremy Corbyn as well as former Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron, who has long sought to strengthen economic ties between the UK and the communist state, including attempts to forge a £ 1 billion investment fund with China.

Cameron’s right-hand man, Chancellor George Osborne, even boasted of a “golden age” that had been created between Britain and China.

Lee also received an award from Cameron’s successor, former Prime Minister Theresa May, who said at the time: and British communities in the UK.

“I also wish you well in your work to promote the inclusion and participation of Chinese-British people in the British political system.”

Parliamentary records also revealed that Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey had also received political donations from Ms Lee.

Responding to the revelation, Sir Ed said on Friday he was “shocked” by the donation, saying: “I don’t even remember this woman, to be frank.”

The Chinese Embassy in London denied that Lee was acting as a spy in Britain, accusing MI5 of using smear and intimidation tactics to target the Chinese community in the UK.

“China always adheres to the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries,” a spokesperson said.

“We don’t need and never seek to ‘buy influence’ in a foreign parliament. We strongly oppose the defamation and intimidation against the Chinese community in the UK.

Former Conservative Party leader and prominent Communist state critic Sir Iain Duncan Smith said he believed “this is clearly a form of espionage”.

Sir Iain, who was personally sanctioned by Beijing last year for his efforts to characterize the persecution of Uyghurs in China’s Xinjiang region as genocide, went on to say that he was told that Lee and his associates did not would not be deported from the UK. .

“Why in the name of heaven is such an agent authorized in the land? He asked himself.

Another Communist-sanctioned MP, Tory Tim Loughton noted that the scandal shows “why I and other Chinese sanctioned lawmakers have repeatedly called for a full audit of the exact spot where all the sinister tentacles of the Chinese Communist Party have bought influence or made their way through a path in so many institutions, boards and organizations across the UK. “

The Chinese espionage scandal comes just days after China’s state-owned Xinhua News Agency published a James Bond parody titled “0.07 No Time to Die Laughing” that poked fun at the idea that China represents a threat of espionage for Great Britain, in particular concerns about Chinese telecommunications the firm Huawei having a “back door” for Beijing to access British data.

The squeaky skit came in response to a speech in November by Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) chief Richard Moore, in which he called China a top priority for the foreign intelligence service.

“The Chinese intelligence services are very capable and continue to conduct large-scale espionage operations against the UK and our allies. This includes targeting those who work in government, industries or on research of particular interest to the Chinese state. They are also monitoring and attempting to exert undue influence over the Chinese diaspora, ”Moore said.

“Adapting to a world affected by China’s rise to power is MI6’s top priority. We are deepening our understanding of China across the UK intelligence community and expanding the options available to the government to deal with the systemic challenges it poses. “

Follow Kurt Zindulka on Twitter here @KurtZindulka

Labor accepted £ 700,000 from suspected Chinese spy: report

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