Foreign Affairs Minister Freeland says Canada has not asked U.S. to drop Huawei extradition request

Chrystia Freeland says this cases should not be politicized

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland says Canada has not asked the U.S. to drop its extradition case against Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou.

Speaking to Bloomberg on January 22nd, 2019 in Davos, Switzerland during the World Economic Forum, Freeland said Meng will have full access to Canada’s judicial system and that the case should not be politicized.

Meng was arrested in Vancouver while in transit to Mexico. She was granted bail but currently faces extradition to the U.S., where authorities reportedly said she deceived international banks to funnel transactions between Huawei and Iran. Meng has maintained that Huawei has no connection or involvement.

On January 21st, 2019, The Globe and Mail reported that the U.S. has informed the Canadian government it will issue a formal extradition request, which could come anytime before January 30th, 2019.

“The detention of Ms. Meng is a criminal justice matter exclusively. We would object very strongly to the notion that it is being politicized or used as political leverage in any way,” Freeland said to Bloomberg. “I want to remind people that she’s out on bail right now, she owns some beautiful homes in Vancouver, and is there. She has had and will continue to have full access to the Canadian judicial system, which is impartial and objective.”

She was asked if Canadians will meet with Chinese officials to discuss the case, to which she responded: “we’ll see.”

Freeland added that the request to extradite her comes from the U.S. and that it was “up to the Americans,” to decide what to do if the case is dropped in Canada.

It is important to note that Huawei is one of the biggest providers of telecommunications equipment. In Canada, Huawei is partnered with Bell and Telus to help deploy the 5G network, the next iteration of mobile networks.

Source: Bloomberg