The Australian, August 26, 2014
Beijing has acknowledged Clive Palmer’s apology for his “mongrels” and “bastards” rant and declared the Chinese people cannot be insulted by such outbursts.
The maverick MP and mining magnate on Tuesday caved in after a week of relentless criticism and “most sincerely” apologised to Chinese ambassador Ma Zhaoxu for his televised tirade last week.
Mr Palmer sparked outrage when he accused the Chinese communist government on national television of shooting their own people and plotting to take over Australia.
Mr Ma said the Chinese government had severely condemned Mr Palmer’s “insulting remarks” but understood they by no means represented Australia’s parliament or its people.
“Ambassador Ma stressed that the Chinese people are never to be insulted,” an embassy spokesperson told AAP in a statement on Tuesday.
Mr Palmer recanted in a letter to Mr Ma as Chinese protesters gathered outside parliament demanding a full and unqualified apology from the crossbench MP.
He wrote that he now realised his comments were an offence to Chinese people everywhere and offered his “most genuine and sincere apology”.
“I regret any hurt or anguish such comments may have caused any party and I look forward to greater understanding for peace and co-operation in the future,” he wrote.
It was an about-face for the outspoken MP, who defied near universal condemnation all week and refused to back down.
[Editor’s Note: Below is a newscast with Mr. Palmer’s original comments.]