Taiwan detains Chinese student for alleged espionage

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TAIPEI: Taiwan prosecutors said a man from China, reportedly a recent graduate from one of the island’s top universities, was detained late Friday on suspicion of espionage, as officials warn of growing China spy threats.

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It is the latest in a string of espionage cases and comes as ties are increasingly frosty between Taipei and Beijing.

China still sees the island as part of its territory to be brought back into its fold even though Taiwan has been self-governing since the two sides split after a civil war in 1949.

Relations have worsened since Beijing-skeptic President Tsai Ing-wen came to power last May.

Local media have named the man as Zhou Hongxu from Liaoning province in northeastern China and say he graduated from the National Chengchi University in Taipei last year.

The Taipei District Prosecutors Office says it is investigating whether he has violated the National Security Act.

“He may have engaged in recruiting a spy circle, in attempt to obtain classified information,” Chang Chieh-chin, a spokesman for the district prosecutor, told Agence France-Presse.

Chang declined to reveal more details as the probe is ongoing.

Zhou, who is around 30 years old, had attempted to recruit a young official from Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, reports say.

The Mainland Affairs Council—Taiwan’s official body that governs relations with China—said students from across the strait must obey Taiwanese law.

AFP

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