Jacinda Ardern comes to Australia’s aid in Twitter dispute with China

Jacinda Ardern comes to Australia’s aid in Twitter dispute with China

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has raised concerns with Chinese authorities about Beijing’s use of a doctored image to target Australia’s war crimes record as international pressure mounts on China’s Foreign Ministry.

The image, which saw Canberra and Beijing trade diplomatic barbs on Monday, purports to show an Australian special forces soldier slitting the throat of a small Afghan child wrapped in an Australian flag.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Monday labelled the image “repugnant” and demanded China issue an apology but has now called for calm among Coalition MPs, telling the Coalition party room on Tuesday that the issue needed no further amplification.

Ardern on Tuesday said New Zealand had registered its concerns directly with Chinese authorities over the use of the image by Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian on Twitter.