China says Huawei CFO’s arrest violation of rights, seeks her release

In a twist of irony, China on Thursday accused the US and Canada of violating human rights by arresting Meng Wanzhou (Sabrina Meng), chief financial officer of telecoms giant Huawei, in Vancouver.

Beijing asked them to “immediately” explain the detention and release her.

Meng, daughter of Huawei’s founder Ren Zhengfei, was arrested on Dec 1 for potential violation of US sanctions imposed on Iran.

Canada confirmed the arrest late on Wednesday but it did not divulge the details as Meng herself had sought a ban on its publication.

Reports said Canada will extradite her to the US which has been investigating Huawei’s suspected role in allegedly shipping its products to Iran and North Korea in violation of US sanctions laws.

The US administration suspects Huawei is close to the leaders in China and follows their orders.

Canada’s ministry of justice said that while the US is seeking Meng’s extradition, a court will hear her bail petition on Friday.

The action against the rising star in Huawei comes days after the US and China announced a 90-day tariff truce in the ongoing trade war. Her arrest at US request is likely to break it. The Dow Jones industrial average plunged more than 500 points on Thursday,

It comes when countries such as US, Australia and New Zealand and companies like the UK-based BT are in the process of blocking the use of Huawei’s equipment in future networks because of security concerns. They believe the technology used by the company could be used for spying by China.

Huawei said it did not defy the US by violating its sanctions against Iran.

Hu Xijin, the editor of the state-run tabloid Global Times, said Meng’s arrest was a declaration of war against China.

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