Canada expels Chinese diplomat accused of orchestrating campaign against Beijing critics

OTTAWA – The government of Canada expelled from the country on Monday 8, the Chinese diplomat Zhao Wei, accused of having orchestrated a campaign of intimidation of a member of the Canadian Congress who criticized the China. “We will not tolerate any interference in internal affairs,” said Canadian Chancellor Mélanie Joly. In response, early on Tuesday 9, China also announced the expulsion of Canadian diplomat Jennifer Lynn Lalonde from Shanghai.

“China has decided to declare Jennifer Lynn Lalonde, Consul of the Consulate General of Canada in Shanghai, persona non grata,” Beijing’s foreign ministry said in a statement. “He was asked to leave China by May 13,” he added.

The relationship between Canada and China is going from bad to worse. Earlier, as Joly sent the Chinese diplomat back to Beijing, Defense Minister Anita Anand said the country was interested in cooperating with the Australian, British and American military alliance known as Aukus – a united coalition in the Pacific for the explicit purpose of containing China. .

Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin Explains Reason for Expelling Canadian Ambassador from Country Photograph: Mark Schiefelbein/AP

second diary globe and mail, Canada was trying to join the group so as not to be excluded from the sharing of intelligence and technology between its historical allies. The chancellery, according to the newspaper, would work hard to join Aukus, raising suspicions that yesterday’s actions were coordinated.

“Canada is very interested in promoting cooperation on topics such as artificial intelligence, quantum computing and other advanced defense technologies with our closest allies,” Anand said.

The Aukus deal is seen as an effort by the Americans, British and Australians to strengthen their presence in the Indo-Pacific region. The military pact included an agreement to supply nuclear-powered submarines to Australia.

China reacted to the deal and accused the three countries of going down a “dangerous path”. “It’s typical of a Cold War mentality and it will trigger an arms race,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said recently.

Canada’s exclusion from the alliance was seen as something of a snub, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau faced strong domestic criticism. Members of the opposition Conservative Party have suggested that the Prime Minister is “not taken seriously” by Canada’s main allies.

The crisis between China and Canada has deepened since the arrest of Meng Wanzhou, a Huawei executive, in 2018 on US orders, and the detention of two Canadians by Beijing in apparent retaliation – all of whom were released after negotiations in 2019.

Last year, Canadian police Police in Canada arrested a Chinese scientist at Hydro-Quebec, the country’s largest electricity company, on charges of espionage. AP and NYT

Megan Schneider

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