BEIJING, March 3 (Xinhua) -- China hopes that Australia can safeguard the safety and legitimate rights and interests of Chinese citizens in Australia, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Wednesday.
Spokesperson Wang Wenbin made the remarks at a press briefing in response to a relevant question.
According to a survey released by an Australian think tank, 18 percent of Chinese Australians say they have been physically threatened or attacked in the past year because of their ethnic background, and 37 percent of Chinese Australians reported negative treatment.
Wang said that for quite some time, there has been continuous discrimination in Australia against people of Asian origins, including overseas Chinese, which poses serious threats to the safety and legitimate rights and interests of Chinese citizens in Australia.
The Chinese government has previously issued a travel advisory and an alert for Chinese students going to study in Australia, hoping Chinese citizens in Australia would take precautions for their own safety, he noted.
"We hope that the Australian side will own up to the problem, make their people better citizens, solve the problems of racism and discrimination at home and safeguard the safety and legitimate rights and interests of Chinese citizens in Australia," said Wang.