Chinese officials should respect New Zealand law

Published: Mon 5 Aug 2019 01:37 PM
ACT Leader David Seymour has today written to the Chinese Consulate raising concerns about its interference in New Zealand’s internal affairs.
“Last week, media reported that the Chinese Consulate had asked Auckland University of Technology to stop a commemoration of the Tiananmen Square protests from proceeding. This followed an attempt last year to prevent a documentary critical of the Confucius Institute from being screened at a number of universities.
“New Zealanders have affirmed the right to freedom of expression against interference by their own government and certainly do not expect it to be interfered with by a foreign government. Our universities are also required by the Education Act to preserve academic freedom.
“The Consulate may believe that criticism of the Chinese Government is its business, but the pursuit of academic freedom and freedom of speech on university campuses are plainly internal matters for New Zealand.
“The Consulate also praised a group of students who assaulted a peaceful protester opposing the Hong Kong extradition bill at the University of Auckland on Monday last week. These comments encouraged disruptive and violent behaviour and undermined the rule of law.
“China is a signatory to the Vienna Convention and is afforded diplomatic immunity in return for accepting a duty that it does not interfere in the internal affairs of the receiving country.
“I have taken this opportunity to write to the Consul-General to ask whether he believes the Consulate’s recent actions have contravened diplomatic conventions.
“It is also deeply disappointing that Foreign Minister Winston Peters has failed to publicly rebuke Chinese officials.
“The political and civil rights of New Zealand citizens are of paramount importance. New Zealanders expect that foreign governments will respect their rights and our country’s laws and values.”
Note to editors: Below is a copy of David Seymour's letter to the Chinese Consul-General.

Next in New Zealand politics

More people getting into work
By: New Zealand Government
Boost in Whānau Ora funding to keep changing lives
By: New Zealand Government
Kaikōura $10.88 million boost in tourism & business
By: New Zealand Government
Plans to protect the future of whitebaiting announced
By: New Zealand Government
New resource for schools on climate change
By: New Zealand Government
Regulations pave way for quality medicinal cannabis
By: New Zealand Government
Gordon Campbell on a White Island inquiry
By: Gordon Campbell
7000 more young people on the dole under Labour
By: New Zealand National Party
Government failing to get Kiwis back into work
By: New Zealand National Party
Labour's soft line on welfare sees 25,000 more on benefit
By: ACT New Zealand
Benefit numbers continue upward trend
By: Lindsay Mitchell
Dunne Speaks: Turia is Right on Whanau Ora
By: Peter Dunne
Whānau Ora claim must be fast tracked, says Māori Party
By: The Maori Party
$10.98 million of PGF funding announced
By: Kaikoura District Council
Proposed whitebait rules are pitiful, won’t save native fish
By: Forest And Bird
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILEWe're in BETA! Send Feedback © Scoop Media