Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau,says Canada marked the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties with China. During a press interaction, Trudeau said Canada will “remain absolutely committed to working with our allies to make sure that China’s approach of coercive diplomacy, its arbitrary detention of two Canadian citizens alongside other citizens of other countries round the world isn't viewed as a successful tactic by them.”
According to local media reports, Trudeau also expressed concern over the protection of human rights in Hong Kong also that of the Uighur minority in China.Two Canadians, including a former diplomat, remain in prison in China a retaliatory measure after a senior executive of the Chinese telecom giant Huawei was detained in Vancouver in late 2018 and faces trial and possible extradition to the US during a case associated with bank fraud.
Trudeau’s words were echoed by Canadian secretary of state François-Philippe Champagne. during a statement issued by Global Affairs Canada, he said, “It is unacceptable that any citizen be arbitrarily detained. Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor must be brought home. this is often something that all Canadians stand united. the utilization of coercive diplomacy causes Canada to re-examine its approach, with attention on multilateral cooperation.”
As Canada is framing a replacement Indo-Pacific policy in light of its deteriorating relations with China, Champagne also said that as a “Pacific nation”, its future ties it to “peace, stability and prosperity within the region.” He also said that “Canada will work with partners to carry the Chinese government accountable to its international obligations” which the “common way forward for Canada and China depends on the rule of law, respect for rights and freedoms and for people altogether their diversity.”
These statements come amid a chorus of criticism directed at China from the Canadian leadership. At a recent European think factory event, defence minister Harjit Sajjan had remarked on how NATO must monitor Chinese activity, particularly within the South China Sea and called it out for practising “hostage diplomacy.”Earlier this month, Canada’s ambassador to the United Nations Bob Rae said the 2 Canadians detained by China were “living in terrible conditions”, adding, “This are some things which we shall always remember .
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