New Zealand MP Jian Yang denies being a Chinese spy

Nationals MP Jian Yang at Chinese and Korean New Year festivities in the Auckland suburb of Northcote

"I refute any allegations that question my loyalty to New Zealand", Dr Yang said in a statement today.

"I have been nothing but upfront and transparent about my education and employment", he said.

A China-born Member of Parliament in New Zealand has been investigated by the country's national intelligence agency over his decade-long links with elite Chinese military colleges, the Financial Times reported.

However Dr Yang said there was no basis to the allegations against him.

The CV also showed that from 1982 to 1987 he worked as a "teaching assistant (associate lecturer)" at the former and a lecturer at the latter from 1990 until 1993 when he moved to Australia to study at the Australian National University. So I taught all sorts intensive reading, listening, all these things, ' he said.

He said his students only collected information through communications in China.

"If you define those cadets or students as spies, then yes, I was teaching spies", he said.

"From the beginning I made it clear to the party that I have this military background, not only to the party but also to other people", he said.

"By the year of my birth, in 1962, China had wiped out private ownership ... a horrific starvation had just passed with the deaths of millions of people ... by 1978 the Chinese economy was on the verge of collapse". But once they understand the system they should be assured that this is nothing really that they should be concerned about, ' he said.

New Zealand Prime Minister Bill English said he was aware of Dr Yang's background

A New Zealand government MP has admitted teaching English to Chinese spies when he was a lecturer at a language institute run by China's spy agency. "I challenge those who are propagating these defamatory statements to front up and prove it".

"This is a smear campaign by nameless people who are out to damage me and the National Party ten days from an election, just because I am Chinese".

Dr Yang told reporters he had never been a spy, but acknowledged teaching people who went on to be intelligence officers, FT reported.

The media organisations said he had not disclosed his work as a teacher at China's top linguistics academy for military intelligence officers.

"Members of the Chinese community in New Zealand would have been obliged to respond to any fundraising request from him as a few would have been aware of his background, and present links to their homeland".

National Party Leader Bill English said he was aware of Dr Yang's career before politics.

"The National Party either spectacularly failed to check out this candidate, or were totally naïve about what his background meant".

The story on Jian Yang may have been planted by enemies of Bill English and National but the motivation does not matter.

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