Australian spy agency focuses on Chinese threat

The director of Australia’s foreign intelligence agency, ASIS, said in a rare public address that his agency had shifted its primary focus away from terrorism and human smuggling and now focused on the growing threat from China. Admitted.

Lecture at Australian National University National Security UniversityASIS executive director Paul Simon said the agency was making adjustments to address what he called some “alarming signs” from the Asian country.

“We are making very responsive adjustments to China,” he said.

“We are still dealing with terrorism, smuggling and kidnapping of Australians, and other issues. We are trying to understand and clarify the delta between what is happening in

Simmons said he believes the relative importance, priorities, and resources assigned to human intelligence may reflect the Cold War.

“There are some very worrying signs,” Simmons said.

Epoch Times photo
A WZ-7 high-altitude reconnaissance drone of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force is seen on the eve of the 13th China International Aerospace Exhibition in Zhuhai, southern China’s Guangdong province, on September 27, 2021. Noel Celis/AFP via Getty Images)

The Chinese threat is a matter for the Australian Defense Force

When Australian Defense Minister Richard Marls announced an investigation into allegations that the Chinese government was actively seeking to recruit former Australian servicemen to train the People’s Liberation Army, Simmons made a rare admission.

speak in Press conferenceMarless said the government had set up a joint counter-foreign interference task force, including members of the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the Australian Security Intelligence Agency.

“The task force I described is investigating a lot of cases,” Marles said. “Our focus now is to make sure we examine the policies and procedures currently in place regarding former defense personnel to ensure they are appropriate.”

In the latest move, a former US Marine fighter pilot and flight instructor who worked in China was arrested in Australia following a BBC report alleging Beijing was headhunting military personnel for training. later.

AFP arrested Daniel Edmund Duggan, 54, on October 21 in the rural town of Orange, New South Wales.

Duggan, who Have been described His company, Top Gun Australia, is a former U.S. Marine Corps Major who served in the Persian Gulf during operations in Kuwait and spent time in the Spanish Navy as Chief Pilot and Managing Director.

He has also flown various military aircraft including the AV-8B Harrier “Jump Jet”, T2C Buckeye, A4J “Skyhawk”, Hawks and Mig29, and is a senior tactical instructor trained in weapons and tactics. It is said that there was , an expert in aerial combat and low-altitude flying, and is contracted as a military tactical instructor and consultant.

BBC report The British Ministry of Defense (MOD) issued an intelligence alert after it was believed that up to 30 former military pilots had been recruited by the Chinese government to train personnel in the People’s Liberation Army.

The BBC claims that the UK government became aware of recruitment efforts in 2019 targeting pilots with experience in high-speed jets and helicopters such as the Typhoon, Jaguar, Harrier and Tornado, and increased efforts to target the current workforce. increase.

Victoria Kelly-Clark


Victoria Kelly-Clark is an Australia-based reporter focusing on the national politics and geopolitical environment in the Asia-Pacific region, the Middle East and Central Asia.