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Australian FM lashes out at Snowden 'treachery' on US visit

Published on Jan 23, 2014 5:10 AM
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Australia's Foreign Minister Julie Bishop speaks to the media during a news conference at the Australian embassy in Beijing on Dec 7, 2013. Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop lashed out Wednesday at Edward Snowden, accusing the US intelligence leaker of "unprecedented treachery" after he unveiled Canberra's efforts to spy on Indonesia. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop lashed out Wednesday at Edward Snowden, accusing the US intelligence leaker of "unprecedented treachery" after he unveiled Canberra's efforts to spy on Indonesia.

Ms Bishop praised cooperation with Washington and reserved harsh words for Mr Snowden, whose revelations led Indonesia to halt work with Australia to stem people smuggling, a key priority for new conservative Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

Shortly before a meeting with US Vice President Joe Biden in Washington, Ms Bishop said Mr Snowden "continues to shamefully betray his nation while skulking in Russia.

"This represents unprecedented treachery; he is no hero," she added, in a speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. "Snowden claims his actions were driven by a desire for transparency, but in fact they strike at the heart of the collaboration between those nations in world affairs that stand at the forefront of protecting human freedom," she said.

 
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