Diplomatic conflict with China: Trudeau is full of western allies

Conflit diplomatique avec la Chine: Trudeau fait le plein d’alliés occidentaux

TORONTO — Justin Trudeau is trying to get the maximum support at an international level in the diplomatic conflict between Canada to China on the detained canadians, including the sentencing to death of a suspected drug dealer, British Columbia.

According to the office of the prime minister, Mr. Trudeau met Monday with the leaders of argentina and new zealand, in the framework of the efforts currently in Canada for the full support in the capitals. Canada has now received the support of other allies, including the United States, the european Union, France, Great Britain, Germany, and Australia, in its efforts to secure the release of two Canadians, Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, arrested in December.

A court in china has imposed the death penalty on Robert Lloyd Schellenberg in a case of drug trafficking. The trial was organized in a hurry, on a background of cooling between the two countries after the arrest, on 1 December, the financial director of the giant chinese telecom Huawei, under a warrant of arrest us for fraud.

This call to the international support has provoked the ire of Beijing, including in an attack to be scathing of the chinese ambassador in Ottawa, who has seen “the selfish western” and “white supremacy”.

Mr. Trudeau has subsequently denounced Monday the decision of Beijing to condemn to death “arbitrarily”, the Canadian Schellenberg. “It is very worrying that China is beginning to act arbitrarily, to apply the death penalty, especially for a Canadian. This is something that concerns us greatly and that we will continue to emphasize with our allies and of course with China,” he said in Ottawa.

China expressed on Tuesday its “great dissatisfaction” in the face of these remarks. During his daily press conference, a spokesperson for the chinese foreign ministry, Hua Chunying, said that Mr. Trudeau should “respect the rule of law [and] the judicial sovereignty of China, to correct its errors and put an end to his remarks irresponsible”.

“Inhuman, immoral”

At a press conference in Saint-Hyacinthe, in the margin of an advertisement of the economy, the minister of foreign Affairs asked by chrystia Freeland stated that Canada had formally asked for clemency.

“Our government and almost all of Canadians think that it is inhuman, immoral. In all cases where there is a possibility that the death penalty is used against Canadians, our government rises up against it,” she commented.

Robert Lloyd Schellenberg was arrested in 2014, and was sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2016 for drug trafficking. A court of appeal, however, and rallied suddenly last month with prosecutors who argued that the sentence was too lenient. The trial of Monday, has been organised in only four days notice.

The court of Liaoning has rejected the plea of innocence of the Canadian. He gave no indication that the sentence can be commuted and the fate of Mr. Schellenberg may be found linked to the feud diplomatic between Canada and China. The chinese press has started to discuss its cause shortly after the arrest of Meng Wanzhou.

The minister asked by chrystia Freeland held to highlight the human drama behind this sudden death sentence. “I spoke with [the father of Mr. Schellenberg] yesterday, this is a very serious situation, very difficult for the family. I want to share my sympathy and I think that the family has the sympathy of all Canadians,” she said.



Canada has updated its advice to canadian travellers to China. The notice asks them now to “exercise great caution due to the risk of arbitrary application of local laws”, referring to the death penalty and the “penalties for drug-related offenses”. The spokesperson of the chinese ministry of foreign Affairs, Hua Chunying, has swept these warnings in the back of the hand, saying that the 222 kilograms of methamphetamine, and Robert Lloyd Schellenberg would have transported deserved the most severe punishment.

China, however, has also called on its nationals to exercise caution in Canada. A notice published Tuesday said that a chinese citizen has recently been “arbitrarily detained” at the request of the United States — an obvious reference to Meng Wanzhou. Beijing asks its nationals to “evaluate fully the risks associated with a trip to Canada for tourist purposes”.

Organizations defending human rights have estimated on Tuesday that the reaction from the chinese ministry of foreign Affairs raised serious questions about possible political interference in the judicial system in China. The chinese media have begun to publicize the case of the Canadian Schellenberg after that Canada had arrested Ms. Meng.

The aunt of Mr. Schellenberg, Lauri Nelson-Jones, said that the family was waiting for news about a possible appeal of the sentence. Zhang Dongshuo, counsel for the Canadian, said that his client had 10 days to dispute the last sentence.

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