Australian journalist arrested in China
Australian journalist arrested in China

Australian journalist arrested in China

A high-profile Australian television anchor working for the Chinese Government's English news channel has been formally arrested on suspicion of illegally supplying state secrets overseas.

Foreign Minister Marise Payne confirmed Cheng Lei's arrest today after she was first detained by Chinese authorities on August 13.

Senator Payne said Ms Cheng - who previously lived in Queensland - was formally arrested on February 5.

"The Australian Government has raised its serious concerns about Ms Cheng's detention regularly at senior levels, including about her welfare and conditions of detention," Senator Payne said.

"We expect basic standards of justice, procedural fairness and humane treatment to be met, in accordance with international norms.

"Our thoughts are with Ms Cheng and her family during this difficult period."

Australian officials have been granted visits to Ms Cheng six times over the past six months, most recently in late January.

When she was first detained, Ms Cheng's two young children were with family members in Melbourne.

More to follow.

Originally published as Australian journalist arrested in China


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