Senator Calls On Nick Xenophon To Detail His Huawei Contract Terms

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South Australian independent Senator Rex Patrick has called on his former boss and former resident of his Senate seat, Nick Xenophon, to reveal details of his contract with Huawei.

After leaving the Senate in 2017, Xenophon co-founded a law firm with former investigative journalist Mark Davis that was appointed as a strategic advisor in 2019. The office also represented Jordan Shanks in a recent high-profile defamation lawsuit.

Xenophon said last week that he would run for the Senate again in the upcoming federal election.

Based on his return to public life, Patrick said in the Senate on Tuesday evening that Xenophon must make the terms of its Huawei deal public.

“As a private individual, he had the right to work for whoever he wanted. But the choice he made resembled someone choosing to do PR work for the German companies Krupp or Messerschmitt in 1938,” Patrick said.

“Mr Xenophon now says he hasn’t worked for Huawei for a while, although we don’t know when he stopped. He now claims to support the Australian government’s 5G ban on Huawei.

“As a declared candidate for the Senate, in the interests of transparency and accountability, he must now disclose the full details of his contractual relationship with Huawei. He must disclose the terms, conditions and duration of his contract; what instructions he has accepted from Huawei ; and exactly what services he and Mr. Davis were paid for.”

Patrick pointed out that Xenophon had previously requested the same from another former senator and had not signed up to Australia’s Foreign Influence Transparency Scheme.

In this, he appears to have relied on the exemption for persons providing legal advice to foreign organizations and on a claim that he did not lobby government ministers directly. However, the work Xenophon Davis did for Huawei appears to have been largely public. relations and aimed at influencing the federal government to reopen the door for Huawei to infiltrate Australia’s 5G telecommunications network,” Patrick said.

“That is, of course, one of fourteen demands the Chinese government has made before they reconsider their current hostile stance towards Australia.”

The current senator has also made allegations that Huawei has been involved in helping Chinese authorities suppress Uyghurs, using back doors in its carrier equipment to aid in state espionage, and maintaining close ties to the Chinese Communist Party. .

“In December last year, it was further revealed that Australian intelligence discovered an advanced penetration into our telecommunications system as early as 2012, an intrusion that started with a software update from Huawei that delivered malicious code,” Patrick said.

“Mr. Xenophon stated that Huawei was an ‘underdog’. I’m not sure how a huge Chinese conglomerate with global networks supported by the Chinese state could ever be described as an underdog, but that was his description. This was all a misjudgment of The Role of Mr. Xenophon.”

Patrick said critical infrastructure such as telecommunications must be fully secured against foreign interference and possible sabotage.

“There can be no compromises when it comes to Australian national security, nor can there be compromises on human rights,” Patrick said.

“Mr. Xenophon has announced his political candidacy. In the interest of accountability and transparency, he must immediately disclose full details of his work for Huawei. I urge him to do so. Voters can then make their own judgment.”

In its full-year results announced earlier this week, Huawei reported a 29% drop in revenue to $100 billion, while profitability rose 76% to $17.9 billion.

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