Dear Mayor and Councillors/Richmond News Editor:
Re: “Councillors explain China stance,” News, July 18
I must express my concern with Richmond council’s engagement with the Chinese government and my support of Coun. Kelly Greene’s comments.
Democratic governments, as recently demonstrated by Australia with its new laws targeting foreign interference, are becoming more aware of China’s long-range plans to influence western governments and the methods China employs to present a benign view of China, such as hosting the UBCM reception.
In a recent meeting with a local MP, I was surprised to learn that it is up to the local government to deal with any foreign interference and not the responsibility of the Canadian federal government. Do local government know how to recognize foreign interference? Do they have the resources or knowledge to deal with it?
As Coun. Greene said, municipal politicians also do not receive security briefings and their information about foreign policy is largely from newspapers.