China will not yield to external pressure on its rule of law; court evidence on Spavor and Kovrig solid: Chinese Embassy in Canada
Published: Sep 06, 2021 12:04 PM
Photo: Former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor (right)

Photo: Former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor (right)

The Chinese Embassy in Canada on Monday strongly condemned Canada's gross interference in China's judicial sovereignty, stressing that the evidence in the cases of Canadian nationals Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig is solid and that China will never yield to any external pressure on its rule of law as nationality is not a "talisman" for escaping the law.

On September 3, the Global Times learned from a source close to the matter that Spavor, who was sentenced in August to 11 years in prison for espionage and illegal provision of China's state secrets to foreign entities, was found to have taken photos and videos of Chinese military equipment on multiple occasions and illegally provided some of those photos to people outside China.

The photos and videos have been identified as second-tier state secrets. Spavor was a key informant of Kovrig and provided him with information over a long period, the source said. 

"China has repeatedly stated its solemn position on the Spavor and Kovrig cases. The information disclosed by relevant authorities shows the evidence in their cases is solid. China is a country under the rule of law. Anyone who breaks the law in China will be punished by Chinese law.

China's judicial authorities have handled relevant cases in accordance with the law on the basis of solid evidence. In this process, the two persons' legal rights have been fully protected," the embassy said in a statement published on its website on Monday. 

The embassy's statement comes as Canada is accusing China of "arbitrary detention" and "coercion diplomacy." 

Media reported that Kovrig and Spavor had been in custody in China for 1,000 days on Sunday, and their supporters took to the streets in Ottawa and beyond. 

"Such accusations are totally confusing and an act of backstabbing. Canada had concocted the so-called declaration against arbitrary detention in an attempt to rally a gang to put pressure on China through 'microphone diplomacy.' This is doomed to fail," the embassy said. 

The embassy stressed that such attempts will never succeed and China will never yield to any external pressure on the rule of law.

The embassy pointed out that Canada acted as an accomplice of the US in detaining Meng Wanzhou on false accusations and suppressing Chinese high-tech enterprises. "This is downright arbitrary detention and coercion diplomacy."

The Chinese embassy once again urged Canada to respect China's judicial sovereignty, stop making irresponsible remarks, correct its mistakes as soon as possible, and make the right decision to release Meng.

In response to the Canadian foreign minister's statement on the so-called "1,000-day arbitrary detention" of Spavor and Kovrig, the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson slammed the statement for ignoring the facts and attacking China.

Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said that Canada's hypocrisy has been exposed as it advocates the rule of law and judicial independence while openly interfering with China's judicial organs. When it comes to "arbitrary detention" and "coercive diplomacy," Chinese citizen Meng Wanzhou is the real victim. 

Nearly 15 million Chinese netizens have signed a petition demanding Canada immediately and unconditionally release Meng and immediately correct its mistake, Wang said.

Global Times