by Ganesh Sahathevan
On December 8, the "Belt and Road" lawyers alliance was announced in Guangzhou, China. Photo by Li Guangyin
The following Twitter post from China analyst Geoff Wade raises an immediate conflict between the national security interests of countries such as Australia and Singapore who are concerned about
Chinese Communist Party interference in their countries' affairs, and the capacity of lawyers to hide literally anything behind the cloak of legal professional privilege.
The Belt and Road International Lawyers Association (BRILA) provides a channel via which information can be conveyed from China to trusted BRILA member firms with the confidence that the information is protected by legal professional privilege (LPP), which is generally recognized, respected and protected in most common law countries.
LPP is vital to the survival of the legal business and it is likely that any attempt to obtain information by national security agencies will be vigorously denied. Regardless, national security must prevail.