Australian media reported earlier this month that the Australian government is deploying specialized diplomatic teams to win international support for a nuclear submarine deal between Australia, the UK, and the US. According to the ABC news report, the teams will try to counter Chinese disinformation campaigns directed against the deal:
February 10, 2022 Australia is bulking up specialised diplomatic teams in both Canberra and Vienna to win international acceptance for the AUKUS nuclear submarine project as it braces for a massive “disinformation” campaign from China and Russia. […] Beijing has already furiously criticised the AUKUS submarines plan, and Chinese officials have made it clear they will do everything they can in international organisations like the IAEA to delay or stymie it. […] A spokesperson for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) told the ABC: “There has been some mischaracterisations and wilful disinformation of the AUKUS partnership and Australia’s acquisition of conventionally armed nuclear-powered submarines.”
Read the full report here.
Last September, the Australian government announced a strategic defense alliance between Australia, the UK, and the US (AUKUS). The alliance was aimed initially at building a class of nuclear-propelled submarines but also to facilitate cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region, where the rise of China is seen as an increasing threat.