Australian publisher reportedly suspends publication of book critical of China, for fear of lawsuits

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation (Andrew Greene) reports:

A leading Australian publisher claims the threat of Chinese Government retaliation is the reason it cancelled plans to print a book which further exposes Beijing's influence on Federal Parliament and other parts of society.

Prominent Charles Sturt University academic Clive Hamilton said Allen & Unwin was ready to publish his manuscript Silent Invasion, but last week informed him it could no longer proceed because it was worried about defamation action….

Silent Invasion closely examines the Chinese Communist Party's activities in Australia, and Professor Hamilton said it had already been significantly edited by lawyers….

In a statement, Allen & Unwin said it had "enormous respect" for Professor Hamilton and his work but after extensive legal advice decided to delay publication "until certain matters currently before the courts have been decided".

"Clive was unwilling to delay publication and requested the return of his rights, as he is entitled to do. We continue to wish him the best of luck with the book," the publisher said.