China responded on Thursday to developments in the case of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou, but remained guarded on whether or not charges filed against her in the United States and the continued pursuit of her extradition from Canada will weigh on critical trade talks between the U.S. and China.
Geng Shuang, speaking for China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said he was not aware of plans to discuss the Meng case during the talks in Washington but reiterated China’s objection to her detention in Canada. She has remained there at the request of the U.S. since December, accused of fraud and related charges in connection with business dealings the U.S. claims are in violation of its sanctions on Iran.
“The U.S. and Canada abused their bilateral extradition treaty and took compulsive measures against a Chinese citizen without cause,” Geng said. “This is a serious political incident that grossly violates the legitimate rights and interests of the Chinese citizen. Once again we urge the U.S. to immediately withdraw the arrest warrant and extradition request for Ms. Meng.”
Geng also said China is “fed up” with complaints about its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) as the United States continues to criticise China’s influence, and pressure Western allies specifically on Huawei dealings.
Huawei issued a statement on the Meng case Thursday, insisting that the allegations against her are untrue and the U.S. pursuit of her case is politically motivated.
She violated no law in Canada, which has no sanctions in place against Iran, her lawyers said, but she faces charges linked directly to U.S. policy.