/ 11 August 2021

China v Canada tit-for-tat back on

Tensions are again flaring between China and Canada after a Chinese court upheld its death sentence against Canadian Robert Schellenberg yesterday. Schellenberg has been detained in China since 2014, when he was accused of trying to smuggle drugs to Oz. He says he’s innocent but was sentenced to death in 2019. Pundits say it’s no surprise that it comes a day before the verdict is due for Canadian Michael Spavor, who is accused of spying. And they say it’s not a coincidence that both Canadians are in court as Meng Wanzhou’s extradition case is back in the spotlight in Canada. To jog your memory, she’s Chinese telco giant Huawei’s chief financial officer who was arrested in Canada in December 2018 at the request of US authorities. America wants her on its side of the border to face bank fraud charges. Canada says China’s engaging in hostage diplomacy, and China says its actions are not linked to Meng’s case. As for Schellenberg, Canadian officials said he is “remarkably composed”.

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