UK recalls Chinese ambassador over “pattern” of hostilities | Espionage | China | Cyber ​​attacks

UK recalls Chinese ambassador over “pattern” of hostilities |  Espionage |  China |  Cyber ​​attacks
The article was translated and adapted from English and originally published by the US headquarters of The Epoch Times.

The Foreign Office summoned Chinese ambassador Zheng Zeguang on Tuesday over the Chinese regime's “pattern” of hostile actions against the UK.

This happened a day after three people were charged Spy for Hong Kong.

“Today, on the instructions of the Secretary of State [Lord Cameron]The Chinese ambassador was invited to the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office [FCDO]A spokesperson said in a statement.

“The summons follows Monday's announcement that three people have been charged with offenses under the National Security Act as part of an investigation led by officers from the Metropolitan Police's Counter-Terrorism Command. The Foreign Intelligence Service is the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region to which the allegations relate,” the spokesperson added.

On Monday, the three men, Matthew Trickett, 37, Chi Leung Wai, 38, and Chung Pyu Yuen, 63, appeared in court accused of admitting to “conducting fraudulent activities to assist in intelligence gathering, surveillance and foreign intelligence”. , i.e. Hong Kong, and must enter a UK residential address on 1 May.

The defendants have yet to enter statements on the charges and their trial will likely not take place until the spring of 2025.

The FCDO said China's “recent pattern of behavior against the UK, including cyber-attacks, espionage links and bribery, is unacceptable”.

Pro-democracy media mogul Jimmy Lai, a British citizen, has been prosecuted under the law since Beijing's legislature imposed a draconian national security law on Hong Kong in 2020. Hong Kong authorities have issued warrants against 13 extradited pro-democracy activists, including those from the United Kingdom. 1 million Hong Kong dollars for each of them (£102,000). Individuals were charged with crimes such as incitement and subversion, collusion with foreign countries or external powers.

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One of the wanted activists living in the UK, Fin Lau, the founder of Hong Kong Liberty, said he was blackmailed in London in 2020 by a group of three suspected of working on behalf of the Chinese Communist Party.

Simon Cheng and Nathan Law, two British residents wanted by Hong Kong police, were targeted in online posts. Gave rewards to their addresses.

Cyber ​​attacks

The summoning of the Chinese ambassador also came after an alleged hack Payment System of Ministry of Defence By an “evil agent”, the media said it was China, and after the government blamed Beijing for cyber attacks on the Election Commission and Parliament.

Alicia Kearns, chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, praised the Chinese ambassador's summons, saying it was “a relief to hear and long overdue.”

“Hostile intervention on British soil is a serious problem for which we must have zero tolerance,” he wrote on social media site X. “We have to be thorough with all countries on this.”

The Chinese embassy has accused the UK government of “anti-China political machinations”.

The embassy said Mr Zheng made “further representations to the British side” and “urged the British side to immediately correct its mistakes”.

On Tuesday, GCHQ director Anne Geist-Butler said “China poses a real and growing cyber risk to the UK”. First big talk As the head of the Intelligence, Security and Cyber ​​Agency.

Speaking at CYBERUK 2024, the government's flagship cyber security event in Birmingham, Ms Geist-Butler said the Chinese regime “has developed an advanced cyber capabilities and is taking advantage of a growing business environment of hacking groups and brokers at your disposal.”

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He said GCHQ's top priority was to respond to the scale and complexity of the challenges posed by the Chinese regime, and that the agency was devoting “more resources to China than any other mission”.

Separately, on Monday, Amnesty International issued a statement Chinese and Hong Kong students in eight countries, including the United Kingdom, are forced to practice self-censorship for fear of retaliation from the Chinese regime.

A student, referred to by the nickname “Rowan”, told Amnesty how she received a call from her father in China just hours after attending a commemoration of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre. Your daughter… Don't participate in events that harm China's reputation. The same thing happened a year later.

Rowan was shocked that her name was not used or posted online about her involvement in the protest, Amnesty said.

Chris Summers contributed to this story.

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