Julie Bishop confirms she will contest the federal election

Ms Bishop said she was encouraged from the positive rhetoric coming out of Washington about the prospects of China and the United States reaching an agreement on trade.

The former Foreign Minister earlier said in a speech that China respected strength, but asked if the Coalition was being too soft on China since the leadership change she said: “No, I believe we strike the right tone and have for some time. The coalition has been utterly consistent in what it says publicly and privately with China.”

Reiterating comments by current Foreign Minister Marise Payne, Ms Bishop said she did not believe there was a link between the detention of Australian writer Yang Hengjun in China and pushback by the United States and its allies against Chinese telco. She said she did not believe charges had yet been laid against Mr Yang.

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