Australia spy agency reveals former politician 'sold out' country: Report

The Australian spy agency revealed that a former politician "sold out" the country to a foreign intelligence unit, local media said on Thursday, News.Az reports citing SBS News. 

Late Wednesday, the chief of the Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASIO), Mike Burgess, said foreign spies had targeted Australians, including a former politician who then "sold out Australia," SBS News reported.

"This politician sold out their country, party, and former colleagues to advance the interests of the foreign regime," the broadcaster quoted Burgess as saying.

The revelation has sparked a political row in the country, with politicians now calling on Burgess to name the politician who worked for foreign intelligence.

Opposition leader Peter Dutton has also joined calls and demanded to expose the "traitor" ex-politician recruited by spies working for a foreign nation.

"If he (Burgess) doesn't indicate the name, then there's a cloud hanging over everybody else," said Dutton.

The country's Home Affairs Minister Clare O'Neil said the foreign government attempted to infiltrate into the top of Australian politics.

"Every politician in this country needs to understand that the work they do and the information they have is incredibly valuable to foreign governments and there will be attempts to use friendships, to use networks, to use technology to try to find out that information," the minister told ABC News.

Meanwhile, the son of former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull revealed that a Chinese agent approached him in 2017, seeking investment for an infrastructure project.

“My reaction was to express no interest and forward the details immediately to authorities,” Sky News quoted Alex Turnbull as saying.

His statement came after the revelation by Burgess as the ASIO chief did not name the country or the politician.


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