Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has rejected the idea of a “prisoner exchange” of two Canadian detained in China for Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou.
Trudeau shot down the possibility of intervening in Meng’s case, who is currently facing extradition to the United States. Members of Canada’s business community have pitched the idea of a prisoner exchange to ease tensions with China, as outlined by the Globe and Mail.
Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor were detained in China in December of 2018 days after Canada arrested Meng in Vancouver after a request from the U.S. Trudeau stated that the detainment of Kovrig and Spavor was retaliation for Meng’s arrest.
Trudeau previously said that the U.S. should not sign a trade deal with China that doesn’t address Meng and the two Canadians. Although there is now a deal between the U.S. and China, there hasn’t been any real progress towards their return.
“We have been engaged, as a priority measure, in securing the return of the two Michaels. We have engaged very closely with the United States on many different paths in terms of resolving this situation,” Trudeau said on January 20th, as reported by the Globe and Mail.
Meng’s extradition hearing is currently taking place in British Columbia. The hearing will focus on whether U.S. allegations are also a crime in Canada. It may take months or even years before a decision is reached because the judicial system in Canada allows decisions to be appealed several times.
Source: Globe and Mail