Skip to main content

Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou returns to court after a lunch break during a hearing in Vancouver on Sept. 30, 2019.

Lindsey Wasson/Reuters

China’s foreign ministry on Monday urged Canada to free an executive of telecom equipment giant Huawei Technologies held for more than a year as she awaits an extradition trial.

Canada arrested Huawei’s chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, on Dec. 1 at Vancouver’s airport at the request of the U.S., which is seeking her extradition on fraud charges.

Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said the U.S. and China were abusing their extradition treaty and violating Meng’s rights.

Story continues below advertisement

“We once again strongly urge Canada to take seriously China’s solemn stance and concerns, take practical measures to correct its mistakes, release Ms. Meng Wanzhou as soon as possible, and ensure that she returns home safely,” Hua said in a routine briefing.

Meng’s arrest has further soured relations between Beijing and Washington as President Donald Trump pressures China on trade and seeks to limit business with Huawei on national security grounds. It also has embroiled Canada in the friction over Huawei: Chinese authorities detained two Canadians in an apparent attempt to pressure Canada to release Meng.

A daughter of Huawei’s founder, Meng is free on bail while staying in one of her two Vancouver homes, awaiting extradition hearings due to begin on Jan. 20.

Also Monday, the Foreign Ministry announced that China was barring the U.S. Navy from making port calls in Hong Kong and announced unspecified sanctions on pro-democracy groups.

Those moves followed President Donald Trump’s signing last week of legislation supporting human rights in Hong Kong, where often violent prodemocracy protests have persisted for the past six months.

It’s unclear if or how the latest flare up in antagonisms might affect trade talks between Beijing and Washington.

The Communist Party newspaper Global Times on Monday ran several articles and commentaries insisting there would be no agreement unless the U.S. commits to rolling back some tariffs the Trump administration has imposed on imports from China to pressure Beijing into altering its policies on trade and technology.

Story continues below advertisement

“Rolling back tariffs is a must. The China-U.S. trade war (was) instigated by the U.S. with tariffs, so the tariffs have to be cut first,” the newspaper quoted Wei Jianguo, a former Chinese commerce minister as saying.

It said there was a “reasonable choice” for Trump to roll back some tariffs for the first deal and leave others for later, to “save the optics of the deal in the U.S. political climate and save the phase one deal.”

Chinese officials earlier said the U.S. side had agreed to gradually phase out the tariffs as negotiations progress. The U.S. side did not confirm that.

Last week, both sides suggested that they were close to striking a deal. Chinese Vice Premier Liu He said he had invited senior U.S. officials to Beijing for further talks. Trump said the talks were in their “final throes” of negotiations.

New U.S. tariffs are set to kick in on many Chinese-made products, including laptops and smartphones, as of Dec. 15. A preliminary deal could avert that.

Promising to not implement the next tranche of tariffs would not suffice, the Global Times said.

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter
To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies