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NZ kingmaker calls for inquiry over China spy report

NZ kingmaker calls for inquiry over China spy report
From Reuters - September 14, 2017

(Reuters) - A populist politician whose party could emerge as a kingmaker at this months New Zealand election has called for an inquiry into whether a member of the ruling National Party government has been working for Chinas intelligence services.

Earlier this week the Financial Times reported that National Party member Jian Yang spent a decade at elite Chinese military academies and has been under investigation by New Zealands national intelligence agency.

Winston Peters, whose New Zealand First party is widely expected to form a ruling coalition with either the National or Labour parties, said that New Zealanders should be very concerned.

National must act now and a full inquiry is required. Peters said on his official Twitter account.

There must be proof Dr Yang is not a risk. Meanwhile, Dr Yang must step aside.

Yang who is 55, had lived in China until he was 32, the Financial Times said. No information about his Chinese education or military background was included in his official biographies in New Zealand or those published when he was an academic at Auckland university, it said.

Yang, who has been a major fundraiser for the National Party and has pushed for closer ties with Beijing, told media that he was the victim of a smear campaign and denied passing on any information to China during his time in New Zealand.

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