Wednesday, Jun 26

Chinese gov't arrests 2 Canadians over espionage claims

In March, China accused the two of involvement in stealing state secrets.
16.05.2019 - 16:16

Chinese authorities have formally arrested on state secrets charges two Canadians detained last year, the government said on Thursday, drawing condemnation from Canada in a case that is likely to further increase tension between Ottawa and Beijing.

ESPIONAGE CLAIMS

Businessman Michael Spavor, who worked with North Korea, and former diplomat Michael Kovrig were picked up separately in December, shortly after Canada arrested Huawei Technologies Co Ltd Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou, who faces extradition to the United States.

China has repeatedly demanded Meng be released, and has reacted angrily to extradition proceedings against her in a Canadian court.

“According to Chinese prosecutors’ approval, Michael Kovrig, due to being suspected of crimes of gathering state secrets and intelligence for foreign (forces), and Michael Spavor, for being suspected of crimes of stealing and illegally providing state secrets for foreign (forces), have in recent days been approved for arrest according to law,” foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang told a daily news briefing.

The measures were in accordance with the law, Lu said, and Beijing hoped Canada “will not make irresponsible remarks” about law enforcement and judicial proceedings in China.