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Pompeo Urges China Return 2 Detained Canadians, Says Imprisonment ‘Unacceptable’

Pompeo Urges China Return 2 Detained Canadians, Says Imprisonment ‘Unacceptable’

While Huawei's Chief Financial Officer faces extradition to the United States over claims that the company avoided US sanctions on Iran, Huawei might be facing another blow.

Earlier this week, Chinese officials detained Michael Kovrig, a former diplomat, and entrepreneur Michael Spavor on suspicion of "endangering national security", said China's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang on Thursday.

Asked about Mr Kovrig, Canada said there was no "explicit indication" of any link to the Meng case. He said the cases are being handled separately by local bureaus of the national intelligence agency in Beijing, where Kovrig was picked up, and the northeastern city of Dandong, where Spavor lived.

"The legal rights and interests of these two Canadians have been safeguarded", Lu told a daily news briefing.

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

She was granted bail of C$10m (£6m; $7.4m) on Tuesday but could still be extradited to the US.

Canadian foreign minister Chrystia Freeland hinted at knowledge of Spavor's disappearance at a press conference on Wednesday, though did not name him, instead saying a citizen had been in touch on Monday to say they had been questioned by Chinese authorities.

"We are working very hard to ascertain his whereabouts, and we have raised this case with the Chinese authorities, and we are in touch with his family", Freeland said.

(FILES) In this file photo taken on January 8, 2014 and released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on January 9, 2014 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (R) speaking with former U.S. basketball star Dennis Rodman (not in picture) as Michael Spavor (L) listens at Pyongyang Gymnasium in Pyongyang. He has met with its leader Kim Jong Un and arranged some of retired National Basketball Association star Dennis Rodman's trips to the country.

One of his most recent Facebook posts, on Sunday, said he was about to travel to Seoul in South Korea but he did not arrive on Monday as planned. The drama has so far not had an impact on the soybean trade and Canadian exports to China are expected to reach a record of more than 2 million tons this year as China seeks out alternative sources to the usa, he said.

First U.S. President Donald Trump attacked Canada on trade.

The broadly defined national security charge encompasses both traditional espionage and other forms of information gathering such as interviewing dissidents and contacting non-governmental organizations. Meng must remain in British Columbia and live in a house owned by her husband.

Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou granted bail by Canadian court
And this has been a big problem that we've had in so many different ways with so many companies from China and from other places. China's Foreign Ministry and Ministry of Public Security did not respond immediately to questions faxed about Kovrig's detention.

Meng, the chief financial officer of Huawei Technologies [HWT.UL], has been accused by USA prosecutors of misleading banks about transactions linked to Iran, putting the banks at risk of violating sanctions.

Before it detained Kovrig and Spaver, China's government had called Meng's arrest a "political conspiracy" and threatened to retaliate.

Freeland said Chinese officials, including China's ambassador to Canada, Lu Shaye, had not connected the different issues in conversations with the Canadian government.

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.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has not engaged in direct talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping in the past two weeks, HuffPost Canada has learned.

T-Mobile and Sprint now don't use any networking hardware from Huawei, but their parent companies do in other countries.

The merger of T-Mobile and Sprint still has to be approved by the U.S. Justice Department and FCC.

Huawei is a Shenzhen-based company and is the largest telecommunications equipment manufacturer in the world.

USA regulators planned to bar it from receiving US components that it depended on, effectively a corporate death sentence.

Canada's ambassador to China, John McCallum, has also been in touch with the Chinese government "on more than one occasion" about the issue.

"Let's see what he actually decides", Ross said.


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