China Summons Canadian Envoy to Protest Huawei Executive's Arrest

Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of telecommunications giant Huawei and daughter of its founder, faces USA accusations that she covered up her company's links to a firm that tried to sell equipment to Iran despite sanctions, a Canadian prosecutor has said, arguing against giving her bail while she awaits extradition.

Major companies have expressed concerns about how the arrest of Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou in Canada at the request of USA authorities would affect U.S.

She was held in Vancouver last Saturday and faces extradition to the U.S., where she could be jailed for up to 30 years if found guilty.

Chinese Foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said yesterday that neither Canada nor the United States had provided China any evidence that Meng had broken any law in those two countries, and reiterated Beijing's demand that she be released.

The case has been adjourned until Monday.

David Martin, the attorney representing Meng at the hearing, acknowledged Skycom had been a Huawei subsidiary but said it was sold in 2009. A 2013 Reuters report said that SkyCom attempted to sell United States equipment to Iran despite USA and European Union bans.

Meng will spend the weekend in jail after a Canadian judge said Friday that he needs to weigh her proposed bail conditions.

Japan is set to ban government use of telecom products made by Chinese tech giants Huawei and ZTE on concerns about cybersecurity, reports said on Friday.

Meng, 46, was taken into custody on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2018, on behalf of the USA, while she was transferring flights in Vancouver, the tech company said.

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"You can rely upon her personal dignity", he said, adding that to breach a court order "would be to humiliate and embarrass her father, who she loves".

The executive is the daughter of Huawei's founder.

Yesterday's court hearing is meant to decide on whether Meng can post bail or if she is a flight risk and should be kept in detention.

Ming Xia, a professor of political science and global affairs at City University of NY, said Meng's arrest was another example of how members of Trump's trade team know how to use very sharp, pinpoint moves to teach China a lesson. It's alleged Huawei used Skycom, an unofficial subsidiary, to transact business in Iran, violating US sanctions in place at the time. Martin identified the firm as HSBC Holdings Plc, but he disputed the USA allegation that Meng misrepresented anything to that financial institution.

"These are organizations, ultimately, tightly tied to the Chinese security apparatus, and we think there are some real, serious issues there", Harper said.

The case against Meng revolves around her response to banks, who asked her about Huawei's links to Skycom in the wake of the 2013 Reuters report.

Executives, including Meng, then made a series of misrepresentations about the relationship between the two companies to the banks, inducing them to carry out transactions linked to Iran they otherwise would not have completed and which violated sanction laws, he told the court.

A number of attendees said their companies were considering restricting non-essential China travel and looking to move meetings outside the country, one of the people added. Even though the North American neighbors have a longstanding treaty governing extradition, it can take months, even years, for a defendant to be handed over, if at all. She conferred with her two lawyers through a translator.

  • Sonia Alvarado