Beijing has issued an extraordinary attack on the Australian government, accusing it of “poisoning bilateral relations” in a deliberately leaked document that threatens to escalate tensions between the two countries.
The government document goes further than any public statements made by the Chinese Communist Party, accusing the Morrison government of attempting “to torpedo” Victoria’s Belt and Road deal, and blaming Canberra for “unfriendly or antagonistic” reports on China by independent Australian media.
“China is angry. If you make China the enemy, China will be the enemy,” a Chinese government official said in a briefing with a reporter in Canberra on Tuesday.
The dossier of 14 disputes was handed over by the Chinese embassy in Canberra to Nine News, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age in a diplomatic play that appears aimed at pressuring the Morrison government to reverse Australia’s position on key policies.