China summons Canadian envoy over Huawei CFO’s arrest

Beijing: China’s Vice Foreign Minister Le Yucheng on Saturday summoned Canada’s ambassador to China, John McCallum, in strong protest over the arrest of Huawei Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Meng Wanzhou last week.

In a statement, Beijing urged the Canadian government to release Meng immediately or face severe consequences, Toronto Star reported.

Meng was arrested on December 1 while transferring planes at Vancouver International Airport en route to Mexico from Hong Kong and has been accused of fraud with a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison.

Meng, who is the daughter of Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei, allegedly allowed the company’s subsidiary SkyCom to do business in Iran, thereby violating US sanctions against the country.

The US government has long viewed the company and its close ties to the Chinese government as a threat to national security. Huawei reportedly also received several warnings over violating Iranian sanctions.

Meng may be extradited to the US, subject to approval from a Canadian court. On Friday, Meng appeared before a Canadian court over her bail, following which the decision was adjourned.

The hearing is set to resume on Monday on whether bail would be granted or not to Meng.

Huawei claims that it is not aware of any wrongdoing by Meng and the Chinese government has firmly requested Meng’s release.