Sydney Morning Herald: Defections are messy and we may never know the full story

With a case like Wang’s that crosses between several regions, it’s impossible to verify every claim. Past defectors who were nonetheless genuine have been accused of spicing up their stories in misguided attempts to strengthen their asylum claims.

Wang does not fit into black and white categories. He does not appear to hold any rank within Chinese military intelligence. His formal education was in fine arts and he originally joined what he claims was a front company thinking he would be involved in cultural activities. Based on his own account of events, he was effectively running errands for an intelligence officer. Spy, agent, intelligence officer – none of these terms are an exact match for Wang’s role.

But as I dug further into his statement, it was possible to find support for some claims.

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