New Zealand lawmaker denies spying for China

In this Jan 26, 2016 photo, Jian Yang, a New Zealand lawmaker who was born in China, talks about his wishes for the Chinese New Year in Auckland, New Zealand.. (Greg Bowker/New Zealand Herald via AP)

WELLINGTON: A New Zealand lawmaker who was born in China said Wednesday he taught Chinese spies while working at that nation's elite military colleges but had never engaged in any intelligence activities himself and was loyal to his new nation.

Jian Yang told reporters he'd never tried to hide his background but hadn't always highlighted it either because New Zealanders might feel sensitive about his ties to the Chinese military.

“Once you understand the system and the universities, then I'm not a spy, just a teacher,'' he said.

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