US To Push For Extradition Of Huawei CFO From Canada

The United States would continue to push for the extradition of the chief financial officer of Chinese tech giant Huawei who was arrested in Canada in December over allegations that she was instrumental in in a conspiracy to defraud banks, said the US Justice Department.

The US authorities have alleged that Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou was the one who had tried to cover up the links of the company with a company that tried to violate the US sanctions on Iran by trying to sell products to Tehran.

It was a day earlier that the Canadian ambassador to the US had informed that Washington had confirmed to the Canadian authorities of its intention of proceeding with her extradition.

Canadian resentment over the dispute which came to an end with the arrest of Meng had been voiced by the ambassador, said David MacNaughton in an interview to The Globe and Mail.

“We will continue to pursue the extradition of defendant Ms Meng Wanzhou, and will meet all deadlines set by the US/Canada Extradition Treaty,” Marc Raimondi, a spokesman for the US Department of Justice, said in a statement.

“We greatly appreciate Canada’s continuing support of our mutual efforts to enforce the rule of law.”

Apart from being the CFO of Huawei, Meng is also the daughter of its founder, Ren Zhengfei. The US and some of the other Western countries and governments have alleged that Huawei has close relationship with the Chinese government and military and is viewed to be amongst the most successful entrepreneurs of the country.

A demand that the US should drop the extradition request had been earlier made by Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying.

Meng’s case not the usual case of extradition and Canada’s extradition treaty with the US violated on the “safety and legitimate rights and interest of Chinese citizens”, Chunying said.

Earlier, demand to release the two detained Canadians in China was made by more than 100 academics and former diplomats in a signed letter.

The two arrests, that of Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig and Canadian entrepreneur Michael Spavor would result in “less dialogue and greater distrust, and undermine efforts to manage disagreements and identify common ground. Both China and the rest of the world will be worse off as a result”, said academics and former diplomats in the signed letter.

Meng’s case is under consideration while she is residing in her Vancouver mansion under house arrest. On the other hand, reports have said that Kovrig and Spavor have not yet been granted bail and they are still languishing in Chinese jails.

Huawei has been as\t the centre of a wider fear among a number of western countries and governments that the equipment supplied by the Chinese firm, which is the largest telecommunications company in the world, has back doors which can be exploited by Chinese agencies to spy on western countries. This has led to a number of countries including the US, Australia and New Zealand, banning the use of Huawei equipment in the construction of the new generation 5G mobile networks in their countries. The Chinese firm has repeatedly denied all such allegations.

(Adapted from Aljazeera.com)

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