23.3 C
Brunei
Friday, September 30, 2022
23.3 C
Brunei
Friday, September 30, 2022
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    Australia’s highest court upholds foreign interference law

    CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA (AP) — Australia’s highest court yesterday rejected a challenge to foreign interference laws in a case that involved a United States (US) conservative political organisation and free speech arguments.

    China has condemned the laws introduced in 2018 that are widely seen as a means of preventing covert Chinese interference in Australian politics, universities and other institutions.

    People working on behalf of foreign powers have to be publicly registered with the Attorney-General’s Department in the interests of transparency.

    But LibertyWorks Inc, an Australian libertarian think tank, objected to having to register while working on communications for the American Conservative Union ahead of conferences held in Australia. LibertyWorks promotes the American group’s annual political
    conferences.

    LibertyWorks argued the so-called Foreign Influence Transparency Scheme Act was not valid because it burdened the implied right to free speech in Australia.

    LibertyWorks said the registration process was “onerous” and therefore deterred political
    communication.

    Founder and president of libertarian group LibertyWorks Andrew Cooper. PHOTO: AP
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