A spokesman for the Chinese government posted an edited image on Twitter to denounce the killing of Afghan civilians and prisoners by Australian soldiers. The Post is making waves.
Australian special forces reportedly killed civilians and unarmed prisoners in Afghanistan between 2005 and 2016.
This is the result of an investigation report after four years of investigation.
A photo montage shared on Twitter is now enraging Australian hearts.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Monday condemned the “scandalous tweet” by Chinese government spokesman Lijian Zhao and called on Beijing to apologize publicly. Zhao caused outrage when he shared an edited picture on the platform of an Australian soldier holding a bloody knife to the throat of an Afghan child. “Do not be afraid, we have come to bring you peace,” says the headline of the photo montage. Zhao writes: “We condemn such acts and demand that the soldiers be held accountable.”
The post was shared days after a war crimes report was published by Australian soldiers in Afghanistan. Special forces reportedly killed dozen of civilians and unarmed prisoners between 2005 and 2016. That is the result of an investigation report that was presented on November 19th after four years of investigation. According to the Australian General Angus John Campbell, high-ranking commanders forced young soldiers to kill the defenseless people.
The results of the investigations were based on the most serious violations of military codes of conduct. “The illegal killing of civilians and prisoners is never acceptable,” he said.
Australian Prime Minister Morrison described Zhao’s tweet as a scandalous and disgusting insult to the Australian armed forces. He asked Twitter to delete the post. “The Chinese government should be ashamed of this publication,” said Morrison in a tweet that drew thousands of responses within a few hours.
However, the Chinese Foreign Minister Hua Chunying does not see any errors in the behavior of the Chinese government. «Some Australian soldiers have committed serious crimes in Afghanistan. The details are appalling and shocking. There are reports of 14-year-old boys whose throats were cut, said the foreign minister in a television appearance according to “News.com.au”. The Australian anger over the tweet is out of place.
Relations between the governments in Canberra and Beijing have steadily deteriorated in recent months. China, Australia’s largest trading partner, recently retaliated against Canberra and stopped importing large numbers of agricultural products such as beef, barley and timber.
The state-controlled Chinese press has attacked Australia several times in various areas. For its part, Australia has banned Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei from deploying the 5G network and requested an independent investigation into the origin of the coronavirus.
The publication of the controversial tweet is the latest example of a new level of aggressive communication by the Chinese government towards foreign countries. Since last year, many diplomats have spoken out on Twitter (although the intelligence service is blocked by China) and sometimes vehemently and controversially defended their government’s position.