National Newswatch

Trading Meng for Kovrig and Spavor would put more Canadians at risk of arbitrary arrests, Trudeau says

Jun 25 2020 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is flatly rejecting a fresh chorus of calls for Ottawa to intervene in the extradition case of high-profile Chinese tech executive Meng Wanzhou and send her home. Proponents of freeing Ms. Meng argue, among other things, that it could prompt China to release two Canadians who were jailed in apparent retaliation […]

China suggests it will free two Michaels if Canada allows Huawei executive Meng to return home

Jun 24 2020 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — The Chinese government says if Canada set Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou free, it could influence the fate of two Canadians jailed and charged with espionage by Beijing. China has repeatedly rejected suggestions there is any connection between its detention of former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig and entrepreneur Michael Spavor and Canada’s arrest of Ms. Wanzhou […]

Ottawa’s lifeline to Saudi LAV maker raises questions

Jun 7 2020 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — The federal government tapped a seldom-used account at Ottawa’s export-financing agency last fall to extend $650-million of support to the defence contractor building combat vehicles for Saudi Arabia, aid that came as Riyadh was falling behind on payment for these machines. The support, in the form of a repayable loan, was provided to General Dynamics […]

Freeland mum on whether Hong Kong asylum seekers will be granted refuge as bigger wave predicted

May 4 2020 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland, asked about dozens of asylum claims made by Hong Kong protesters in Canada, praised the rich contribution immigrants from this former British colony have made to this country but declined to indicate whether Ottawa would grant the applicants refuge. Ms. Freeland told media Monday that while she can’t comment on […]

Hong Kong protesters seek refuge in Canada

May 3 2020 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — Close to 50 Hong Kongers – many of whom took part in the massive demonstrations that began last year as China tightened its grip on the Asian city – are seeking asylum in Canada, citing harassment and brutality at the hands of police in the former British colony and fear of unjust prosecution. Forty-six people […]

Ottawa funds COVID-19 research project that is collaborating with Wuhan virus lab

Apr 17 2020 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — The Canadian government is funding a COVID-19 research project led by a University of Alberta professor that includes collaboration with the Wuhan Institute of Virology, the high-security infectious-disease lab based in the Chinese city where the pandemic began. The government has given Le Xiaochun, an analytical and environmental toxicology researcher at the University of Alberta, […]

Former Liberal justice minister urges sanctions against Chinese officials who covered up early COVID-19 outbreak

Apr 15 2020 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — Former Liberal justice minister Irwin Cotler, a leading international champion of human rights, is blaming the Chinese government for the scale and spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, saying he believes transmission of the novel coronavirus could have been dramatically reduced if China had acted earlier. He also says the world would have been far more […]

Canada can’t visit detainees Kovrig, Spavor due to China’s COVID-19 jail rules

Apr 14 2020 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — Canada has been unable to meet for nearly three months with two Canadians imprisoned in China because jails there are closed to visitors as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Diplomat-on-leave Michael Kovrig and entrepreneur Michael Spavor have been detained by China since December 2018 in what is widely seen as retaliation for Canada’s arrest […]

John Manley urges ‘prisoner exchange’ to swap Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou for two Canadians held in China

Dec 3 2019 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — Canada should swap Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou for two Canadians detained in China in a “prisoner exchange,” says former Liberal deputy prime minister John Manley, who is a director of a Canadian telecommunications company that uses equipment from the Chinese multinational. Referring to the Glienicke Bridge, which once separated West Berlin from East Germany, Mr. […]

Huawei’s pocketbook pitch: Chinese giant touts Canadian job creation in push for 5G access

Nov 27 2019 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — Chinese high-tech giant Huawei says it has funnelled $50-million into Canadian university research over the past decade and added nearly $700-million to Canada’s economic output in 2018 alone, figures it is releasing as it tries to persuade Ottawa not to ban its equipment from next-generation 5G wireless networks in this country. These numbers are in […]

Second former envoy says PMO requested ‘one voice’ in public comments about China

Jul 24 2019 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — A second former Canadian ambassador to Beijing, Guy Saint-Jacques, says he too received a call from the foreign ministry that delivered a message from the Prime Minister’s Office about the need to avoid contradictory public messaging regarding China.Mr. Saint-Jacques, who served as Canada’s envoy to China between 2012 and 2016, said he found this directive […]

Ex-envoy to Beijing says PMO asked him to clear public comments on China with Ottawa

Jul 24 2019 — Steven Chase and Robert Fife — The Prime Minister’s Office asked former Canadian diplomat David Mulroney to check with the foreign affairs ministry before he makes future public statements on Ottawa’s China policy, citing the “election environment,” the ex-envoy says.The request came in a telephone call from a senior Global Affairs Canada official last Friday.Mr. Mulroney, who was ambassador to Beijing […]