China blocked Sydney academic from leaving to “safeguard national security”

By Philip Wen and Christian Shepherd BEIJING, Mar 30 : China said today that it blocked an Australia-based Chinese academic from taking a flight to Sydney this week to “safeguard national security” as fellow professors called for Beijing to allow him to return home. Feng Chongyi, a long-service associate professor of China studies at the […]

Australia holds emergency meet with China after extradition treaty failure

By Colin Packham SYDNEY, Mar 29 : Australia’s foreign minister held an emergency meeting with the Chinese ambassador in the wake of Canberra’s failure to ratify an extradition treaty with China, a source familiar with the situation said today. Australia cancelled a parliamentary vote yesterday to finally ratify an extradition treaty with China, 10 years […]

Early reports of damage in wake of Australia’s Cyclone Debbie

By Tom Westbrook SYDNEY, Mar 29 : The Australian army headed into areas hardest hit by Cyclone Debbie and tens of thousands of homes remained without power as dawn broke today amid reports of substantial damage in some areas. Debbie ripped a trail of destruction through northeast Australia on Tuesday as a category four storm, […]

Thousands shelter as “screaming, howling” Cyclone Debbie hits north Australia

By Tom Westbrook and Benjamin Weir SYDNEY, Mar 28 : Howling winds, heavy rain and huge seas pounded Australia’s northeast today, damaging homes, wrecking jetties and cutting power to thousands of people as Tropical Cyclone Debbie tore through the far north of Queensland. Wind gusts stronger than 260 km per hour (160 mph) were recorded […]