China’s extreme warning to students
CHINA'S embassy in Canberra has issued a safety warning after what it claims is a surge in "insulting incidents" directed at Chinese students living in Australia.
The embassy posted a message to its website at the weekend warning of "a rising number of insulting incidents" and urged students to report any safety problems, the ABC reported.
"Recently, attacks and insults targeting Chinese students have occurred in different places in Australia," the warning read.
"Therefore, we warn all Chinese students in Australia to keep alert of possible danger and call the police and embassy if such incidents occur."
The extraordinary messages are believed to be in response to three Chinese students being bashed at a Canberra bus station in October.
The incident prompted Chinese ambassador Cheng Jingye to visit the students at Canberra College and express the Chinese government's "serious concerns" over the violence.
The warning also comes after racist flyers - suggesting Chinese students would be deported - were found at two Melbourne universities in July.
China has about 170,000 nationals studying in Australian universities, schools and colleges.
The warning is the latest fault line between China and Australia after Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull pointedly declared that he would "stand up" against Chinese interference in Australian politics by announcing tougher espionage laws.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said Australia needed to "shake off their Cold War mentality and bias against China".
"We are shocked by the Australian leader's remarks, which lack principle and simply pander to those irresponsible reports by some Australian media," he said earlier this month.
"Imbued with bias towards China, these groundless and unfounded remarks can sabotage China-Australia relations and are detrimental to the foundation of mutual trust and co-operation.
"We are strongly dissatisfied with those remarks and have lodged stern representations with the Australian side."