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Thursday, 17 February 1977
Page: 173

Mr BROWN (DIAMOND VALLEY, VICTORIA) - My question is directed to the Prime Minister. Is it a fact that an Australian citizen, Miss Susan Day, presently employed by the Government of the People's Republic of China as a teacher, has applied to the Chinese authorities for permission to marry a Chinese citizen? So far as the Prime Minister knows, has that permission not yet been given? Will the Prime Minister be prepared to use his good offices to encourage the Chinese authorities to give permission for that marriage to take place?

Mr MALCOLM FRASER (WANNON, VICTORIA) (Prime Minister) -This is the kind of individual case in relation to which an Australian Government would want to act sympathetically. If the circumstances were reversed I think an Australian government would want to respond to a request made by somebody to marry an Australian citizen. When I was in China I expressed to the Chinese Government the view that, as we saw the situation, permission ought to be given for Miss Susan Day to marry the Chinese to whom she wished to be engaged. I understand that subsequently she made an application to take out Chinese citizenship. The interest of the Australian Government was expressed quite correctly. In more recent times the Austraiian Embassy in Peking has been asked to remind the authorities of the views that were expressed several months ago. I am not aware of any response having been received from the Chinese authorities.

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