Canada's forced inclusion of countries to sign so-called declaration against ‘arbitrary detention’ is fraud, unethical: Chinese FM
Published: Feb 22, 2021 04:16 PM

The Chinese Foreign Ministry on Monday slammed Canada for being hypocritical and despicable by forcibly including some countries in signing the so-called declaration against "arbitrary detention," calling it a forged statement and an act of fraud.

On February 15, Canada unveiled a declaration signed by foreign ministers from 58 countries targeting the arbitrary detention of foreign nationals, a practice Ottawa said China has deployed against Canadian citizens.

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said at Monday's routine press conference that it is hypocritical for Canada to rally some countries to issue the so-called declaration. It is even more despicable that Canada forcibly included some countries into the group of signatories against their will, when they clearly indicated their disapproval of and non-participation in the so-called declaration. 

Such fraud violated the professional ethics of diplomacy and breached basic norms governing international exchanges, and should be condemned, Wang said. 

Wang noted that "Canada's detention of Huawei's Meng Wanzhou is the typical case of arbitrary detention."

"We understand that Canada is under pressure from the US. However, as a sovereign state, Canada arrested Meng on trumped-up grounds and held her for more than two years with her violating no Canadian law. The so-called declaration is more like a 'confession' admitting the mistake Canada has made in the Meng case," Lü Xiang, a research fellow at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing, told the Global Times previously.

China expressed its strong dissatisfaction and firm opposition over the declaration and has lodged solemn representations with Canada, the Chinese Embassy in Canada said on February 16. 

Canada deliberately arranged for someone from Human Rights Watch to accuse China of the "arbitrary detention" of Canadians Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor at the launch of the declaration, which is totally fact-distorting and ill-intentioned, a spokesperson of the Chinese embassy said.

Chinese experts said the declaration, which coincided with China celebrating the Lunar New Year, is an aggressive and ill-considered attack designed to provoke the country. As such, China will not be scared or make compromises. Canada's chosen diplomatic approach has never worked before, and will not achieve any goal in the future, and this very act from Canada will just "rebound in the worst possible way," they say.  

Global Times