Embassy takes aim at anti-China hysteria
(Translation appears in Arabic section)
Canberra: The Chinese Embassy has scolded the Australian media and political class for jeopardising "mutual trust" between the two countries.
The embassy's statement comes after the Turnbull government vowed to curb foreign influence in Australian politics, and after Labor's Sam Dastyari was banished to the opposition backbenches over his dealings with a Chinese businessman.
"China has no intention to interfere in Australia's internal affairs or exert influence on its political process through political donations," an embassy spokeswoman said on Wednesday.
Australia's reputation as a multicultural society is being tarnished by "fabricated" news stories with a Cold War mentality, she said.
The reports, "made up out of thin air" and filled with ideological bias, reflected a typical anti-China hysteria and paranoia.
As well, some Australian politicians and government officials had made irresponsible remarks to the detriment of trust between the two countries, the embassy said.
"We urge the Australian side to look at China and China-Australia relations in an objective, fair and rational manner," the spokeswoman said.
American officials have been increasingly concerned at the level of Chinese influence in Australia, and the acting United States ambassador has cautiously welcomed the Turnbull Government's announcement.
Same-sex marriage bill passes House of Representatives after hundreds of hours of debate
Canberra: Same-sex marriage will be legal in Australia, with Parliament agreeing to change the Marriage Act and end the ban on gay and lesbian couples marrying.
Four members of the House of Representatives voted against the bill and some abstained, but an overwhelming majority voted for the bill.
Liberal senator Dean Smith's bill will now become law after a day of cheers, tears and applause in the Lower House.
People queued for access to the public gallery to witness the law being changed and by the time of the final vote, they were packed into every spot.
Same-sex marriage supporters wearing colourful "Yes" T-shirts clapped and cheered as amendments were voted down, prompting repeated warnings they should stop their barracking.
The public gallery led a chorus of We Are Australian after the final vote, with members of the parliament joining in from the floor of the House in tears.
Chaos will continue into the New Year with the legitimacy of decisions being questioned
Canberra: THE 45th Parliament of Australia is close to losing its authenticity as a representative body and it could soon be time to shut it down and start again.
The citizenship bungles by sitting members and senators have repopulated both houses with new MPs or recycled old ones and added an unprecedented blight of uncertainty.
“This reflects the delightfully feral state of Australian politics at the moment,” said an unimpressed Labor MP Ed Husic said.
And it is likely there is more instability and political skirmishing ahead as members cast their citizenship status and electoral fates to the High Court winds.
The High Court early next year could be occupied by a brace of MPs referred to it to have their citizenship status clarified. That would create dislocation as members wait in limbo.
Growth figures spark sharp Aussie dollar fall
Sydney: THE Aussie dollar has experienced a sharp drop this morning after economic growth figures for the year to September were released.
Economic growth figures were published and showed lower than expected growth for the 12 months to September.
The Australian dollar dropped sharply on the result, from 76.13 US cents release to 75.84 US cents two minutes later.
The economy was expected to grow by 0.7 per cent in the quarter and 3.0 per cent over the 12 months to September.
But Australian Bureau of Statistics data showed Australia’s economy expanded 0.6 per cent in the September quarter and grew 2.8 per cent over the year.
Treasurer Scott Morrison said the figures indicated “solid” economic growth, however, with growth accelerating from 1.9 per cent to 2.8 per cent through the year.