|Chinese FM Spokesperson: The So-called "Forced Labor" Issue in Xinjiang Is a Rumor Created by a Few Anti-China Media and Organizations|
Journalist: Australian media reported that Premier of New South Wales Gladys Berejiklian has admitted she's concerned that China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation, the company contracted to build new trains for Sydney, had been identified as a beneficiary of Uyghur labour. The original contract for the trains was signed back in 2006 under a Labor government. "Obviously we're concerned with that and if there's anything further we need to do, I'm sure Transport for NSW will take that action, Ms Berejiklian said. What is China's comment on that?
Zhao Lijian: We have noted relevant reports. My colleagues and I have pointed out on many occasions that the so-called "forced labor" issue in Xinjiang is a rumor created by a few anti-China media and organizations such as the Australian Strategic Policy Institute. Such a rumor has not a shred of fact in it. I would like to stress once again that all the people in workforce in Xinjiang, regardless of ethnic origin, race, gender or religious belief, enter into labor contracts with their employers and establish legally protected labor relations in accordance with the Labor Law, the Labor Contract Law and other related laws and administrative regulations. There is no such thing as "forced labor". Some anti-China forces try to use this made-up topic to smear China's image, interfere with and undermine China's bilateral relations with other countries, and seek their own political interests. Their despicable plot is doomed to fail. We hope that the Government of New South Wales and people from all sectors of society will keep their eyes open, make a right judgment, resist fallacies concocted by restless anti-China institutions, and create favorable conditions and atmosphere for China-Australia cooperation.
I would also like to point out that Chinese enterprises have always conducted economic, trade and investment cooperation with Australia on the basis of observing local laws and following the principle of mutual benefit, which has already brought tangible benefits to both sides. China will resolutely safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese companies and China's national image and interests.