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International relations

Chinese Australians feel heat from worsening diplomatic friction

As some chafe at questions of loyalty, others welcome scrutiny of Beijing

Chinese students in Sydney in June: The Chinese Australian community is caught between the two quarreling governments, while some fear the spat will dissuade international students from returning to Australia after COVID-19.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- When three Chinese Australians appeared in front of an Australian Senate Committee in October to testify about community relations, they might have expected an anodyne hearing typical of the legislative chamber.

But then Eric Abetz, a Liberal Party senator from Tasmania, asked the trio -- one of whom was born in Australia -- if they would be "unconditionally willing to condemn the Chinese Communist Party dictatorship."

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