Home GRASP/China Amid Row Over Huawei Case, China Detains a Former Canadian Diplomat

Amid Row Over Huawei Case, China Detains a Former Canadian Diplomat


Questions related to the incident dominated the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s Wednesday press briefing.
The row between China and Canada over the case of Meng Wanzhou — chief financial officer and deputy chair of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei as well as a daughter of Huawei’s founder, Ren Zhengfei — is getting increasingly complicated and severe.
On December 11, Reuters broke the news that China has detained Michael Kovrig, a former Canadian diplomat who currently works for the International Crisis Group (ICG) as Senior Adviser for Northeast Asia.
The incident happened soon after Meng was arrested in Vancouver, British Columbia on December 1 at the request of U. S. law enforcement authorities.
On December 12, ICG released a formal statement on its website, calling for Kovrig’s “immediate release” and revealing more important details on the case.
ICG said in its statement that Kovrig was “detained on Monday [December 10] night in Beijing by the Beijing Bureau of Chinese State Security” and the organization has received no information since then.
“We are making every effort to learn more and to secure consular access to Michael from the Chinese authorities,” the statement added, implying that Kovrig has not been granted consular access yet.
According to Kovrig’s resume, since joining ICG in February last year, he has been focusing on foreign affairs and global security issues in Northeast Asia, particularly on China, Japan, and the Korean Peninsula. With a master’s degree in international affairs from Columbia University, Kovrig previously worked as a Canadian diplomat in Beijing, Hong Kong, and at the United Nations in New York.

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