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Meng Wanzhou Hearing Begins

The extradition hearing for Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou began in Vancouver. She was arrested by the RCMP in December 2018 at the request of US officials, on the grounds that she had violated US sanctions against Iran. In retaliation, the Chinese government detained two Canadian citizens — Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor — in China.

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Genocide

Genocide is the intentional destruction of a particular group through killing, serious physical or mental harm, preventing births and/or forcibly transferring children to another group. The Canadian government has formally recognized five instances of genocide abroad: the Armenian genocide, the Holodomor, the Holocaust, the Rwandan genocide and the ethnic cleansing in Bosnia. Within Canada, some historians, legal scholars and activists have claimed that the historical, intergenerational and present treatment of Indigenous peoples are acts of genocide.

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Meng Wanzhou Affair (Two Michaels Case)

The Meng Wanzhou Affair (a.k.a. the case of the two Michaels) was a legal and diplomatic dispute that strained relations between Canada, China and the United States. It began in December 2018 when the RCMP in Vancouver arrested Meng Wanzhou, the CFO of the Chinese technologies company Huawei. They did so on behalf of an American court that wanted Meng extradited to the United States. Nine days later, the Chinese government arrested and detained two Canadians: Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor. The two Michaels were imprisoned for 1,020 days. They were freed on the same day as Meng — 24 September 2021. The episode marked the emergence of China’s “wolf warrior diplomacy” and demonstrated Canada’s limited diplomatic options as a middle power.

timeline event

Michael Spavor Sentenced to 11 Years in Prison in China

Michael Spavor, who had been detained in China on espionage charges since December 2018 following Canada’s detention of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, was sentenced to 11 years in prison by a Chinese court. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued a statement calling the verdict “absolutely unacceptable and unjust… For Mr. Spavor, as well as for Michael Kovrig who has also been arbitrarily detained, our top priority remains securing their immediate release. We will continue working around the clock to bring them home as soon as possible.”

timeline event

The “Two Michaels” Are Released from China

Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, two Canadians who were detained in China on espionage charges on 10 December 2018 in retaliation for the detention of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou in Vancouver earlier that month, were released by Chinese authorities. They returned to Canada on 25 September. Their release came one day after a court in BC dropped the case seeking to extradite Meng to the US over wire fraud and conspiracy charges. The two Michaels had spent more than 1,020 days imprisoned in China.

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Canada and the World Trade Organization

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is the only international organization that regulates global trade. It is based in Geneva, Switzerland. Canada is one of its 164 members. The country plays a central role in the WTO and was also a key member of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade that preceded it. In addition to helping craft the WTO’s dispute resolution systems, Canada is among those countries most directly involved in its trade dispute cases.

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Human Rights

Human rights are rights that we all have by virtue of our shared humanity. Depending on the nature of the right, both individuals and groups can assert human rights. Human rights as we understand them today are a relatively modern concept. All human rights are indivisible, interrelated and interdependent. None has automatic precedence over any other. The realization of human rights is a constant struggle on the part of people who suffer injustices and who seek redress. Human rights are an important part of the social fabric of Canadian society. Canadians have also played a role in the evolution of human rights on the international stage.