Foreign Minister Marise Payne Monday rejected restrictions imposed by Chinese government against the detained Chinese-Australian writer Yang Hengjun in Beijing.
“I am very concerned by reports from a recent consular visit to Australian citizen Dr Yang Hengjun, who remains in criminal detention in China,” Ms Payne said in a statement.
Foreign Minister was disturbed to note that Dr Yang was being kept in isolation from the outside world, with restrictions on his communications with family and friends, and being subjected to daily interrogation while wearing shackles.
“This is unacceptable”, she reacted over the Beijing treatment with Chinese-Australian writer.
She said Australian government made repeated requests to the Chinese authorities for an explanation of the charges against Dr Yang.
“We have also made repeated requests for him to be afforded basic standards of justice, procedural fairness and humane treatment, in line with international norms, including access to his lawyers and to his family, both of which continue to be denied to him”, she continued.
Ms Payne lamented that this has not led to any substantive changes in his treatment.
She affirmed to continue to express their expectations in clear terms to the Chinese authorities — both in Beijing and in Canberra — including that Dr Yang be released and that, while his detention continues, he be treated fairly and humanely.
Earlier, Prime Minister Scott Morrison while talking to journalists in Canberra also expressed his concerns on reports about the Chinese government treatment with Dr Yang.
“The most recent consular access was a matter of great concern to me and the Foreign Minister and we will continue to make those representations on behalf of an Australian citizen,” he said.