Canada Granted Consular Access To Ex-Diplomat Arrested By China: Official

The Canadian foreign ministry identified the second Canadian as Michael Spavor. (File)


Canada’s ambassador met in Beijing Friday with a detained former diplomat for the first time since he was arrested in China amid sharpening East-West tensions over trade and other issues.

Michael Kovrig, the former diplomat, and a second Canadian, Michael Spavor, were taken into custody earlier in the week after a top Chinese tech executive was arrested in Vancouver at the request of the United States.

Canada’s foreign ministry said its ambassador to Beijing, John McCallum, was granted consular access to Kovrig on Friday and is pressing for access to Spavor.

Meanwhile in Washington, Canada’s foreign and defense ministers held talks with their US counterparts on the row.

The Canadians were arrested for what Beijing has said is suspicion of “harm to national security” — a phrase often used by Beijing when alleging espionage.

But the detentions are widely believed to be retaliation for Canada’s arrest December 1 of Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei.

Meng was arrested while changing planes in Vancouver, outraging China and sparking a diplomatic standoff between the North American allies and Beijing.

The United States has accused her of lying to bankers about the use of a covert subsidiary to sell to Iran in breach of sanctions. If convicted, she faces more than 30 years in prison.

On Tuesday a Canadian judge ordered Meng’s released on Can$10 million (US$7.5 million) bail, pending a US extradition hearing.

– Visit shelved –
Canadian Tourism Minister Melanie Joly, meanwhile, shelved a trip to China next week to promote this country as a top destination for leisure travel.

“Canada and China mutually agreed to postpone the Canada-China Year of Tourism Closing Ceremony and Minister Joly’s planned travel to China,” her office said in a statement.

Since Beijing approved Canada as a tourist destination for its citizens in 2010, the number of Chinese tourists visiting Canada has risen by 20 percent per year to almost 700,000 in 2017.

Ottawa had hoped to double the figure by 2021, opening seven new visa application offices in China this year to facilitate the processing of travel documents. But those targets are now in doubt amid a public backlash in China.

Kovrig, who works for the International Crisis Group (ICG) think tank, was being investigated by the Beijing bureau of state security, while the agency’s office in northeast Liaoning province was handling the probe into Spavor, Lu said.

Spavor is a China-based business consultant who facilitates trips to North Korea, met with its leader Kim Jong Un and arranged some of retired NBA star Dennis Rodman’s trips to the country.

China’s foreign ministry said ICG was not registered in China and its employees would be “in violation” of the law if they engage in activities in the country.

ICG closed its office in the Chinese capital after Beijing passed a law on NGOs, which came into force in 2017, to better control the activities on its soil of foreign organizations.

Kovrig was based in Hong Kong for ICG, working on foreign policy and security issues in the region, particularly on the Korean Peninsula.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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Canada Says Second Citizen Questioned In China Now ‘Missing’

The Canadian foreign ministry identified the second Canadian as Michael Spavor.

Beijing, China: 

A second Canadian citizen who has been questioned by authorities in China is “presently missing”, Canadian officials said Thursday, adding to tensions following the arrest of a top Chinese telecom executive on a US request in Vancouver.

The Canadian foreign ministry identified the second Canadian as Michael Spavor, a China-based business consultant who facilitates trips to North Korea, met with its leader Kim Jong Un and famously arranged some of retired NBA star Dennis Rodman’s visits there.

His disappearance emerged after former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig, who works for the International Crisis Group think tank, was detained during a visit to Beijing on Monday.

Kovrig’s arrest was seen by experts as retaliation over Canada’s arrest of Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of Chinese telecom giant Huawei, at Washington’s request on allegations related to breaking Iran sanctions.

Meng was released on Can$10 million (US$7.5 million) bail by a court in Vancouver on Tuesday pending a US extradition hearing.

Meng’s case has infuriated Beijing and shaken Canada’s relations with China, which is itself embroiled in a trade war with the United States.

“We are aware that a Canadian citizen, Mr. Michael Spavor, is presently missing in China,” Canadian foreign ministry spokesman Guillaume Berube told AFP in an email.

“We have been unable to make contact since he let us know he was being questioned by Chinese authorities,” he said.

Before Spavor’s identity was disclosed, Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland told a press conference that the Canadian government was “working very hard to ascertain his whereabouts and we have also raised his case with Chinese authorities.”

China’s foreign ministry did not immediately respond to faxed questions.

Kim and Rodman

Spavor is based in northeast China, where he runs the Paektu Cultural Exchange programme, an organisation that facilitates sport, cultural, tourism and business trips to North Korea.

He earned recognition after helping facilitate visits by former Chicago Bulls star Rodman in 2013 and 2014. Spavor has also appeared in North Korean state media photos showing him talking with Kim a few years ago.

AFP’s attempts to call his two cellphone numbers were met with messages saying “powered off” or “invalid” and calls to the Paektu Cultural Exchange office went unanswered.

Kovrig’s fate is also unknown, as Chinese authorities have yet to confirm why he is being held.

His employer, the Brussels-based International Crisis Group, said he was detained by the Beijing bureau of Chinese state security Monday night, but it has not received any information since then.

China’s foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said Wednesday that ICG was not registered in China and its employees would be “in violation” of the law if they engage in activities in the country.

The Beijing News newspaper reported Wednesday that Kovrig was under investigation on suspicion of “engaging in activities that endanger China’s national security” — a phrase often used in espionage cases.

Canadian officials said they were officially informed via fax early Wednesday of Kovrig’s detention.

“Canada is deeply concerned about the detention of Mr. Kovrig and Canada has raised the case directly with Chinese officials,” Freeland said.

Kovrig was based in Hong Kong for ICG, working on foreign policy and security issues in the region, particularly on the Korean Peninsula.

ICG closed its office in the Chinese capital after Beijing passed a law on NGOs, which came into force in 2017, to better control the activities on its soil of foreign organisations.

Friends and experts say Kovrig may have become a “hostage” and “pawn” in the three-nation feud.

“In this case it is clear the Chinese government wants to put maximum pressure on the Canadian government,” Guy Saint-Jacques, the former Canadian ambassador to Beijing, told AFP.

Politicising extradition?

Freeland has also indirectly criticised statements by US President Donald Trump, who said in an interview on Tuesday he was ready to intervene in the Meng affair if it helped seal a trade deal with China.

“Our extradition partners should not seek to politicise the extradition process or use it for ends other than the pursuit of justice and following the rule of law,” the Canadian minister said.

Asked by Reuters if he would intervene with the Justice Department in her case, Trump had been quoted as saying: “Whatever’s good for this country, I would do.”

Freeland said it would be “up to Ms. Meng’s lawyers whether they choose to raise comments in the US as part of their defence of Ms. Meng.”

It “will be up to the Canadian judicial process, to Canadian judges, how to weigh the significance of what Ms Meng’s lawyers say.”

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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Trump May Intervene After Canada Gives Bail To Huawei Executive Meng Wanzhou


A top executive of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei Technologies Co Ltd was granted bail by a Canadian court on Tuesday, 10 days after her arrest in Vancouver at the request of U.S. authorities sparked a diplomatic dispute.

Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s chief financial officer and the daughter of its founder, faces U.S. claims that she misled multinational banks about Iran-linked transactions, putting the banks at risk of violating U.S. sanctions.

In a court hearing in Vancouver, British Columbia, Justice William Ehrcke granted C$10 million ($7.5 million) bail to Meng, who has been jailed since her arrest on Dec. 1. The courtroom erupted in applause when the decision was announced. Meng cried and hugged her lawyers.

Among conditions of her bail, the 46-year-old executive must wear an ankle monitor and stay at home from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. Five friends pledged equity in their homes and other money as a guarantee she will not flee.

If a Canadian judge rules the case against Meng is strong enough, Canada’s justice minister must next decide whether to extradite her to the United States. If so, Meng would face U.S. charges of conspiracy to defraud multiple financial institutions, with a maximum sentence of 30 years for each charge.

The arrest of Meng has put a further dampener on Chinese relations with the United States and Canada at a time when tensions were already high over a trade war and U.S. accusations of Chinese spying.

U.S. President Donald Trump told Reuters on Tuesday he would intervene in the U.S. Justice Department’s case against Meng if it would serve national security interests or help close a trade deal with China.

Speaking in Beijing, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said Meng’s arrest “was a mistake from the start”.

“We have already made clear our position to the United States and Canada, who should immediately correct their mistake and release Meng Wanzhou,” he told a daily news briefing.

“Any person, especially if it is a leader of the United States, or a high-level figure, who is willing to make positive efforts to push this situation towards the correct direction, then that, of course, deserves to be well received.”

China had threatened severe consequences unless Canada released Meng immediately, and analysts have said retaliation from Beijing over the arrest was likely.

The U.S. State Department is considering issuing a travel warning for its citizens, two sources said on Tuesday.

The Canadian government was considering issuing a similar warning, Canada’s CTV network reported. Reuters was not able to confirm the report.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Canadian government said that one of its citizens in China had been detained.

The International Crisis Group think-tank said on Wednesday it had received no information from Chinese officials about the detention of its employee, former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig, and that it was seeking consular access to him.

The Chinese ministry spokesman, Lu, said he had nothing he could say on the details of the case, but said the ICG was not registered in China as a non-governmental organization and Kovrig could have broken Chinese law.

The Canadian government said it saw no explicit link to the Huawei case.

However, Guy Saint-Jacques, Canada’s former ambassador to China, asked by the Canadian Broadcasting Corp whether the Kovrig detention was a coincidence, said: “In China there are no coincidences … If they want to send you a message they will send you a message.”

Electronic monitoring

Meng, who was arrested as she was changing planes in Vancouver, has said she is innocent and will contest the allegations in the United States if she is extradited.

Tuesday was the third day of bail hearings. Meng’s defense had argued that she was not a flight risk, citing her longstanding ties to Canada, properties she owns in Vancouver and fears for her health while incarcerated.

Her family assured the court she would remain in Vancouver at one of her family houses in an affluent neighborhood. Her husband said he plans to bring the couple’s daughter to Vancouver to attend school, and Meng had said she would be grateful for the chance to read a novel after years of working hard.

“I am satisfied that on the particular facts of this case … the risk of her non-attendance in court can be reduced to an acceptable level by imposing bail conditions,” said the judge, adding that he was also persuaded by the fact that Meng was a well-educated businesswoman with no criminal record.

She must remain in Canada and be accompanied by security guards when she leaves her residence. Meng will pay a cash deposit of C$7 million, with five guarantors liable for a remaining C$3 million if she absconds.

Meng was ordered to reappear in court on Feb. 6 to make plans for further appearances.

Huawei, which makes smartphones and network equipment, said in a statement it looked forward to a “timely resolution” of the case.

“We have every confidence that the Canadian and U.S. legal systems will reach a just conclusion,” it said, adding that it complied with all laws and regulations where it operates.

The case against Meng stems from a 2013 Reuters report about Huawei’s close ties to Hong Kong-based Skycom Tech Co Ltd, which attempted to sell U.S. equipment to Iran despite U.S. and European Union bans.

Huawei is the world’s largest supplier of telecommunications network equipment and second-biggest maker of smartphones, with revenue of about $92 billion last year. Unlike other big Chinese technology firms, it does much of its business overseas.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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Canada Ex-Diplomat Detained In China, Says Justin Trudeau

Justin Trudeau said Canada is taking Michael Kovrig’s arrest “very seriously” (File Photo)


A Canadian, believed to be a former diplomat, has been detained in China, prompting concern in Ottawa and Washington, as Beijing fumes over the arrest of a senior technology executive.

“We are aware of the situation of a Canadian detained in China. We have been in direct contact with the Chinese,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters, adding that Ottawa was taking his arrest “very seriously.”

The International Crisis Group earlier said it was aware of reports of the detention of its employee Michael Kovrig, a Chinese-speaking expert who served as a Canadian diplomat in Beijing, Hong Kong and at the United Nations.

“We are doing everything possible to secure additional information on Michael’s whereabouts as well as his prompt and safe release,” the think tank said in a statement.

The United States reacted quickly, calling on Beijing to abide by its commitments to human rights.

“We urge China to end all forms of arbitrary detentions and to respect the protections and freedom of all individuals under China’s international human rights and consular commitments,” deputy State Department spokesman Robert Palladino told reporters.”

There was no immediate official word from China but the detention comes after Canada’s arrest of Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of telecoms giant Huawei, on a US extradition request.

Meng, who was stopped while changing planes in Vancouver, is suspected of violating US sanctions on Iran.

Earlier Tuesday, China warned that it would not tolerate any “bullying” of its citizens abroad and has demanded Meng’s release.

A judge in Vancouver was expected to make a ruling later Tuesday on whether Meng could be released on bail.

Canadian Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said Ottawa was “deeply concerned” by the detention of one of its citizens, adding that he had expressed to Beijing “how seriously Canadians view this.”

“We are obviously worried about whenever a Canadian is put in a situation that puts them at some risk or jeopardy where there’s no apparent or obvious cause or trigger for that,” he told reporters.

He added that there was “no explicit indication” that Kovrig’s detention was linked to Meng’s arrest.

Kovrig went to work last year for the ICG, which is known for its research on peaceful solutions to global conflicts.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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China To Canada Over “Nasty” Arrest

Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s global chief financial officer, was arrested in Canada and faces extradition to US


China warned Canada on Saturday that there would be severe consequences if it did not immediately release Huawei Technologies Co Ltd’s chief financial officer, calling the case “extremely nasty.”

Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s global chief financial officer, was arrested in Canada on Dec. 1 and faces extradition to the United States, which alleges that she covered up her company’s links to a firm that tried to sell equipment to Iran despite sanctions.

The executive is the daughter of the founder of Huawei.

If extradited to the United States, Meng would face charges of conspiracy to defraud multiple financial institutions, a Canadian court heard on Friday, with a maximum sentence of 30 years for each charge.

No decision was reached at the extradition hearing after nearly six hours of arguments and counter-arguments, and the hearing was adjourned until Monday.

In a short statement, China’s Foreign Ministry said that Vice Foreign Minister Le Yucheng had issued the warning to release Meng to Canada’s ambassador in Beijing, summoning him to lodge a “strong protest.”

Adam Austen, a spokesman for Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, said Saturday there is “nothing to add beyond what the Minister said yesterday”.

Freeland told reporters on Friday that relationship with China is important and valued, and Canada’s ambassador in Beijing has assured Chinese that consular access will be provided to Meng.

When asked about the possible Chinese backlash after the arrest of Huawei’s CFO, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters on Friday that Canada has a very good relationship with Beijing.

Canada’s arrest of Meng at the request of the United States while she was changing plane in Vancouver was a serious breach of her lawful rights, Le said.

The move “ignored the law, was unreasonable” and was in its very nature “extremely nasty,” he added.

“China strongly urges the Canadian side to immediately release the detained person, and earnestly protect their lawful, legitimate rights, otherwise Canada must accept full responsibility for the serious consequences caused.”

The statement did not elaborate.

“There will probably be a deep freeze with the Chinese in high-level visits and exchanges,” David Mulroney, former Canadian ambassador to China, said on Friday.

“The ability to talk about free trade will be put in the ice box for a while. But we’re going to have to live with that. That’s the price of dealing with a country like China.”

Meng’s arrest was on the same day that U.S. President Donald Trump met in Argentina with China’s Xi Jinping to look for ways to resolve an escalating trade war between the world’s two largest economies.

“We are tracking the developments of this case and refer you to the filings in the Supreme Court of British Columbia,” said a U.S. State Department official, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The news of Meng’s arrest has roiled stock markets and drawn condemnation from Chinese authorities, although Trump and his top economic advisers have played down its importance to trade talks after the two leaders agreed to a truce.

A Huawei spokesman said on Friday the company has “every confidence that the Canadian and U.S. legal systems will reach the right conclusion.” The company has said it complies with all applicable export control and sanctions laws and other regulations.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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Who Is Meng Wanzhou, the Huawei CFO Arrested in Canada?

Meng Wanzhou had been groomed for decades to join the ranks of China’s business royalty.

She started in the early 1990s on the switchboard of her father’s company, Huawei Technologies, the world’s largest maker of telecommunications network equipment. So began a quiet, but steady, rise that was widely viewed as a bottom-to-top apprenticeship to one day take the helm of Huawei from her father, Ren Zhengfei.

Meng’s carefully built world is now caught in a showdown between China and the United States with potential economic and diplomatic ramifications.

Meng, Huewei’s chief financial officer, is set to appear in court Friday in Vancouver, Canada, for a bail hearing after being arrested while changing planes Saturday. US prosecutors have been investigating since 2016 whether Huawei violated US export and sanctions laws by shipping US-origin products to Iran.

But the specific targeting of Meng – rather than the company in general – has raised speculation by some trade analysts that the case could cast a shadow over attempts by Beijing and Washington to end their trade battles.

On Thursday, China sent twin messages: demanding Meng’s release but also expressing hope that the incident would not derail possible fresh momentum on trade talks started by President Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jingping last week.

Yet an editorial in the pro-government Global Times newspaper, which often reflects the foreign policy views of the Communist Party, decried the United States for “resorting to despicable hooliganism” in seeking Meng’s detention.

In many ways, Meng’s family story exemplifies the Chinese dream.

Her father was born into a poor family in the remote, rural province of Guizhou in 1944 and was initially denied entry to the Communist Party because of his family’s poor political standing.

He was finally admitted while he was doing his miliary service in 1978, two years after the end of the Cultural Revolution. He started Huawei in 1987 with the equivalent of $3,000 (roughly Rs. 2.12 lakhs).

“I always had this faith that I should work hard, devote myself to good causes, and be even ready to sacrifice my life for the interest of the people,” Ren said during a visit to New Zealand in 2013.

The company rapidly became a technological giant, and Ren is now estimated to be worth $3.4 billion, according to the Forbes Rich List.

He is not only enormously wealthy, he also now has excellent political connections. When Xi went to Britain for a state visit in 2015, Ren gave him a tour of Huawei’s London office.

Now 74, the founder had been widely seen as methodically planning to one day hand control to his eldest daughter, who also uses the English name Sabrina Meng.

Ren has denied that a transition strategy is in place. But it is clear that Meng, in her mid-40s, has been moved, step by step, into a rarefied place in the company and among China’s corporate elite.

Meng studied at Huazhong University of Science and Technology and, after graduating in 1992, started working at China Construction Bank. A year later, she joined her father’s company, working for a time as a telephone operator.

“I served as a secretary, and helped on sales and exhibitions etcetera, when the company was small. My early jobs in Huawei were very trivial,” she said in an interview with the 21st Century Business Herald in 2013.

She returned to her university in 1997 to study for a master’s degree in accounting, then returned to Huawei’s finance department. This “was the real start of my career,” she told the paper.

As Huawei took off, so did Meng’s career.

She was the brains behind setting up five global service centers on the world and a global payment center in Shenzhen, credited with boosting Huawei’s accounting efficiency, according to her official company biography.

Then in 2007, she led a partnership between Huawei and IBM that helped the Chinese company develop its data systems. More recently, she has been focused on Huawei’s finances and long-term development plans as the company’s chief financial officer.

Earlier this year, she was named deputy chairwoman of the company’s board.

Chinese Internet commentators rallied behind Meng on Thursday.

One person on the Weibo social media platform, using the name “Seavees,” quoted a line from the patriotic Chinese blockbuster movie “Wolf Warrior 2”: “Chinese citizens: When you are in danger overseas, don’t give up. Remember, there is a strong motherland behind you.”

© The Washington Post 2018

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Hockey World Cup 2018, India vs Canada: When And Where To Watch Live Telecast, Live Streaming

The Indian men’s hockey team that remained unbeaten after a thrilling draw against Belgium in their previous match Hockey World Cup 2018 match at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar will aim to keep their top spot in Pool C intact when they take on Canada in their final league encounter on Saturday. India are presently on top of group with four points but Belgium, with the same number of points and separated only by goal difference, will be keeping a keen eye on proceedings. The home team will look for a convincing win when they take on 11th ranked Canada and maintain the top spot to earn a direct qualification to the quarter-finals of the tournament. India got off to a solid start in the tournament with a thumping 5-0 win against South Africa. In the second match, the Manpreet Singh-led team was held to a 2-2 draw against World No. 3 Belgium. Harmanpreet Singh and Simranjeet Singh were the scorers for India.

When is the Hockey World Cup 2018 India vs Canada match?

The Hockey World Cup 2018 India vs Canada match will be played on December 8, 2018.

Where will the Hockey World Cup 2018 India vs Canada match be played?

The Hockey World Cup 2018 India vs Canada match will be played at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar. 

What time does the Hockey World Cup 2018 India vs Canada match begin?

The Hockey World Cup 2018 India vs Canada match will begin at 19:00 hrs IST.

Which TV channels will broadcast the Hockey World Cup 2018 India vs Canada match?

The Hockey World Cup 2018 India vs Canada match will be telecast on Star Sports Network. Along with that, Doordarshan also has the broadcast rights.

How do I watch the live streaming of the Hockey World Cup 2018 India vs Canada match?

The live streaming will happen on the official YouTube channel of International Hockey Federation (FIH). The live streaming will also happen on Hotstar. For live updates, you can follow

(All telecast and streaming timings are as per information received from the host broadcasters)


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Don’t Want Our Defenders To Concede Any Goal Against Canada, Says Coach Harendra Singh


The Indian team will face Canada on Saturday. © Facebook

The Indian team will face Canada on Saturday, aiming to book a berth in the quarter-finals of the Hockey World Cup 2018. The hosts, who top their pool, are equal on points with Belgium. However, a win against Canada will take India a step closer to booking a direct spot in the final eight. For that to happen, not only will India need to beat Canada but also hope that Belgium don’t have a better goal difference at the end of the group stages. India coach Harendra Singh has set a target of not conceding any goals against Canada — who are yet to win a match this tournament. He also said that he wants his side to maintain the top spot in the Pool C.

“The team will be playing a different kind of hockey tomorrow. We have a target and we have to achieve it,” Harendra Singh said.

“We want India to finish at the top of Pool C and do not want the Indian defenders to concede any goal in the coming match against Canada,” he added.

“The team is in a better position in terms of goal average compared to Belgium. So, there is no need to think more on that. Let’s see how Belgium is performing,” he added.

National team skipper Manpreet Singh has also showed confidence in his side and said that the five days break has helped them concentrate on fitness and study the opponent’s play.

“We got five days break after the match against Belgium. While we concentrated on fitness, we also got time to study the opponent team,” he said.

India had defeated lower-ranked South Africa while played out a draw against superior-ranked Belgium in their previous outings.

(With IANS inputs)

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China Furious At Huawei Executive’s Arrest In Canada

Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Canada following a US extradition request. (file)


China reacted furiously today after a top executive and daughter of the founder of Chinese telecom giant Huawei was arrested in Canada following a US extradition request, threatening to rattle a trade war truce with the United States.

The detention of Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s chief financial officer, comes after American authorities reportedly launched an investigation into suspected Iran sanctions violations by Huawei, which was already under scrutiny by US intelligence officials who deemed the company a national security threat.

The arrest stirred tensions just as the United States and China agreed to a ceasefire in their trade spat while negotiators seek a deal within three months.

“We have made solemn representations to Canada and the US, demanding that both parties immediately clarify the reasons for the detention, and immediately release the detainee to protect the person’s legal rights,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told a regular press briefing in Beijing.

Meng was arrested in the western city of Vancouver on December 1, Canada’s ministry of justice said in a statement on Wednesday, prompting China’s embassy to say it had “seriously harmed the human rights of the victim”.

The ministry said the US is seeking her extradition and she faces a bail hearing tomorrow, adding it could not provide further details due to a publication ban that was sought by Meng, whose father, Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei, is a former Chinese People’s Liberation Army engineer.

Huawei, which overtook Apple as the world’s number two smartphone maker this year, said it was unaware of any wrongdoing by Meng and was provided “very little information” about the charges.

“Huawei complies with all applicable laws and regulations where it operates, including applicable export control and sanction laws and regulations of the UN, US and EU,” the company said in a statement.

The Wall Street Journal reported in April that the US Department of Justice had opened an investigation into suspected violations of Iran sanctions by Huawei.

The New York Times said the company had been subpoenaed by the US Commerce and Treasury Departments over alleged violations of Iran and North Korea sanctions.

“China is working creatively to undermine our national security interests, and the United States and our allies can’t sit on the sidelines,” said US Senator Ben Sasse in a statement linking the arrest to US sanctions against Iran.

The arrest occurred on the same day that US President Donald Trump and Xi struck the trade war truce at a summit in Argentina.

Ye Tan, an independent Chinese economist, said Meng’s arrest could be used as a “bargaining chip” in the trade talks.

“The talks will continue but it’s going to be a lot more tense with higher stakes,” Ye told news agency AFP.

But Geng, the foreign ministry spokesman, said both countries will follow the agreement reached by Trump and Xi to “increase consultations, and work towards an earliest possible mutually beneficial agreement”.

The commerce ministry said separately it will “immediately implement” measures reached under the trade truce, which includes agricultural products, energy and autos, and was “confident” a deal could be reached in the coming 90 days.

ZTE Case

News of her detention rippled through Asian stock markets, with Shanghai and Hong Kong falling and tech firms among the worst hit.

Huawei is not the first Chinese telecoms equipment firm to face the ire of US authorities.

Earlier this year, the US imposed a seven-year ban on the sale of crucial US components to Chinese smartphone maker ZTE after finding it had failed to take action against staff who were responsible for violating trade sanctions against Iran and North Korea.

The ban nearly destroyed the Chinese tech company, forcing it to cease major operations in May.

A month later, Washington and Beijing reached a deal that would strike ZTE from the sanctions list- just days after China reportedly offered to ramp up purchases of American goods to reduce the trade imbalance with the US. American officials denied any connection between the two.

In exchange, ZTE agreed to pay a hefty $1 billion fine and put an additional $400 million in escrow in case of future violations. It was also ordered to replace its board of directors and retain outside monitors.

The case showed that China is highly dependent on imports of US-made semiconductors or computer chips and reinforced Beijing’s need to become self-reliant on this key technology.

Espionage Worries

Huawei is one of the world’s largest telecommunications equipment and services providers.

But its US business has been tightly constrained by worries it could undermine American competitors and that its cellphones and networking equipment, used widely in other countries, could provide Beijing with avenues for espionage.

In May, the Pentagon said that devices from Huawei and ZTE posed an “unacceptable” security risk. Personnel on US military bases are banned from buying ZTE and Huawei equipment.

Over the summer, Australia barred Huawei from providing 5G technology for wireless networks in the country over espionage fears.

New Zealand followed suit in November, but said the issue was a technological one.

Britain’s largest mobile provider BT announced Wednesday it was removing Huawei’s telecommunications equipment from its 4G cellular network, after the MI6 foreign intelligence service chief singled out the company as a potential security risk.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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