Natasha Kassam is a Research Fellow at the Lowy Institute in the Diplomacy and Public Opinion Program, directing the annual Lowy Institute Poll and researching China’s domestic politics, Taiwan, and Australia-China relations. Prior to this appointment, she was a diplomat in the Australian Embassy in Beijing, reporting on human rights, law reform, Xinjiang, and Tibet, and she was a law and justice advisor to the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI). During her time at Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, she also assisted in drafting the 2017 Foreign Policy White Paper. Kassam provides regular commentary to media outlets including The New York Times, CNN, BBC, Bloomberg, and The Guardian. Kassam holds a Bachelor of Laws (Hons I) and a Bachelor of International Studies from the University of Sydney and speaks Mandarin and Solomon Islands Pijin.

Last Updated: December 9, 2019

Conversation

12.09.19

What Does Beijing Want from the Pacific Islands?

J. Michael Cole, Michael S. Chase & more
In late September, Pacific Island countries the Solomon Islands and Kiribati switched their diplomatic allegiances from Taiwan to China. That month, a Beijing-based company signed a secretive deal granting it exclusive development rights for the...