Britain legislate against foreign interference after Chinese spies are found to be active in parliament

The British government will introduce new legislation to combat foreign interference, British Home Secretary Priti Patel said after it was discovered that Chinese Communist Party spies were active in parliament.

The UK’s MI5 security agency took the unusual step of sending a warning to Congress on January 12, with an individual named Christine Ching Kui Lee “politically interfering on behalf of the United Front Work Department (UFWD). I am deliberately engaged in this. ” Chinese Communist Party (CCP). “

The alert was that Lee was promoting financial donations to British political parties and politicians, and that anyone contacted by her said, “British politics, keeping in mind her relationship with the Chinese state. We should leave it to move the CCP agenda in. “

“I was very shocked that an individual who had been engaged in political intervention on behalf of the Chinese Communist Party for many years targeted members of the parliament,” Patel said in a statement at the House of Commons on January 17. Said.

She said that the purpose of such influential activities was “to further favor the political situation in Britain on the agenda of the Chinese authorities and to those who expressed concern about the activities of the Chinese authorities on very pressing issues such as human rights. To challenge. “

She said similar security alerts would “become more common” as intelligence agencies “adapted to counter these emerging threats.”

The British government has enacted a new national security law “to make it even more difficult for malicious countries to carry out such activities,” Patel said, saying that such a bill was “with security agencies.” It provides law enforcement agencies with the tools they need to cause complete turmoil. ” Threats of various nations. “

“I was shocked that any member of the house should be allowed to be used by foreign forces,” said Sir Iain Duncan Smith, a former Conservative leader.

“Government needs to be even tighter,” he added. “It’s time to change our position and call China a real threat to us.”

Another Conservative lawmaker, Bob Seely, said a similar scandal “until the espionage law is updated, the domestic lobbying law is updated, and the foreign lobbying law is introduced.” Stated.

Opposition parties are also calling for steps to be taken to strengthen Britain’s defense against China’s intervention.

Labor’s Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper said the information contained in the MI5 security warning was “obviously very serious” and “most strongly condemns China’s attempt to interfere with Britain’s democratic process.” Said.

Labor lawmaker Kris Bryant emphasized that lawmakers need to “keep their eyes wide open on the possibility of a break into British politics.”

He also said that a series of Chinese officials, including Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam and four officials in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, would be sanctioned for “violating human rights in both Hong Kong and China.” I asked.

PA Media contributed to this report.

Alexander Chan