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China furious at Huawei executive's arrest in Canada

07 December 2018, 06:28 | Joann Bryant

Canada arrests Huawei CFO, to extradite her to US

Asian markets tumble, China tech hit after Huawei arrest

Canadian authorities arrested Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of Huawei and the daughter of its founder, on Saturday as she was changing planes.

Meng was arrested in Vancouver on December 1, the same day that President Donald Trump was in a high-stakes meeting with China's president, Xi Jinping.

The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this year that United States authorities are investigating whether Chinese tech giant Huawei violated sanctions on Iran. He declined to give further details, given that Meng faces a bail hearing on Friday.

But China's government says that she hasn't broken any US or Canadian laws, and is demanding that Canada "immediately correct the mistake" and release her.

Canada on Thursday defended its arrest of an executive of Chinese tech giant Huawei on a U.S. extradition request as markets wobbled on fears of fresh friction between Washington and Beijing.

The Chinese embassy in Canada has also released a strongly worded statement.

Huawei confirmed the arrest in a statement and said that it has been provided little information of the charges, adding that it was "not aware of any wrongdoing by Ms. Meng". He said targeting Huawei, one of the most successful Chinese companies, "will trigger anti-US sentiment in China". Meng was detained in Vancouver but is facing potential extradition to the US, which had earlier opened an investigation into whether Huawei sold equipment to Iran despite sanctions on exporting there. It surpassed Apple in smartphone sales in the second quarter of this year, leaving it behind only market leader Samsung.

The arrest is believed to be related to alleged violations of USA sanctions though there has been no official statement from Washington.

The detention of Meng, who takes her family name from her mother and has also used the English first names "Cathy" and "Sabrina", has once again thrown the spotlight on Huawei at a time of heightened global concerns over electronic security.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has defended the decision by Canadian authorities to execute a USA extradition request and detain a Huawei executive.

Huawei said Ms Meng, the daughter of founder Ren Zhengfei, was detained while transferring between flights.




Last month, New Zealand blocked a mobile phone company from using Huawei equipment, saying it posed a "significant network security risk".

China has demanded her release, calling the arrest a human rights violation.

An editorial in the pro-government Global Times accused the US of "maliciously finding fault" with Huawei.

The U.S. government has taken a series of steps to block the firm from U.S. markets, including banning government purchases of Huawei gear and denying government help to any carrier that uses Huawei equipment.

The arrest comes at a sensitive time for US-China relations.

Huawei's affordable smartphones have made strong inroads in the developing world, but the company has faced repeated setbacks in major Western economies over security concerns.

Sasse said in a statement that China was "working creatively to undermine our national security interests, and the United States and our allies can't sit on the sidelines".

"Public opinion in China will likely become more negative in respect to the trade war, and potentially against United States companies", Deutsche Bank analyst Zhiwei Zhang said on Thursday.

China is demanding Canada immediately free a top executive of a giant telecom firm arrested last Saturday on a US warrant.

The two sides had agreed to meet and resolve their differences within 90 days, but Meng's arrest has thrown this into doubt, bringing back the spectre of huge tariffs and the global economic damage they would cause.

He also responded to the idea that Meng could be found guilty in Canada for being in breach of sanctions the United States has imposed on Iran. These include director of the global accounting department, chief financial officer of Huawei Hong Kong and president of the accounting management department, the website said.



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