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Home / Business / Huawei arrested "CFO" against human rights, "says China

Huawei arrested "CFO" against human rights, "says China



  Meng Wanzhou, File Image 2 October 2014

Image copyright
EPA

Caption

Meng Wanzhou was arrested during transfers between flights in Vancouver

China has called on the US and Canada to clarify the arrest of Meng Wanzhou, Huawei's chief financial officer.

The daughter of the founder of the Chinese telecommunications company was arrested on December 1

in Vancouver and could face extradition to the US.

Details of the arrest have not been released, but the US has investigated Huawei for potential violations of sanctions against Iran.

China demanded her release and said that her imprisonment was possibly a misuse of rights.

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Huawei is one of the largest providers of telecommunications equipment and services in the world. Recently, Apple became the second largest smartphone maker after Samsung.

Ms. Meng has requested a ban on publication of the details of the arrest, which was granted by the courts. Huawei said there is little information about the charges and "Ms. Meng has not committed misconduct".

How did China react?

A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman told reporters, "Imprisonment for no reason violates a person's human rights."

"We have made solemn statements in Canada and the United States demanding that both parties promptly explain the reasons for the arrest and release the detainee immediately in order to protect the person's legal rights."

China's protest tone is likely to be Amazing activists who have criticized Beijing's own record regarding rights. Amnesty International says there are "serious human rights threats" in China and "those who speak out against the authorities are harassed, arrested and detained."

Ms. Meng's arrest comes at a sensitive time for relations between the US and China. The nations are involved in a trade war in which both were sentenced with billions of dollars' worth of the goods of the other party.

But concern over the arrest would have affected the 90-day ceasefire negotiated between the two nations at the G20. China announced in a regular press conference on Thursday that it would implement the agreed measures "immediately".

It also coincides with efforts to restrict the use of Huawei technology in Western countries. The US, Australia and New Zealand have blocked the use of the Chinese company's infrastructure equipment for new, faster 5G mobile networks.

What did Canada say ?

The Canadian Department of Justice confirmed the date and location of the arrest of Ms. Meng, adding, "It is being requested by the United States to extradite it, and a bail hearing is scheduled for Friday."

It He said it could not say more because Ms. Meng had applied for a ban on publishing details and this had been ordered by the courts.

A US spokesman The Justice Department in the eastern district of New York – which Huawei had indicted – declined to comment.

What could be behind it?

US media have reported that Huawei is being investigated for possible violations of US sanctions against US authorities Iran.

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Getty Images

Caption

Huawei is one of the largest providers of telecommunications equipment and services in the world

A New York Times report said the US Department of Commerce and Finance had summoned the company for alleged violations of sanctions against Iran and North Korea.

US lawmakers have repeatedly accused the company of being a threat to US citizens security, arguing that its technology could be used by the Chinese government for espionage.

When US Senator Ben Sasse responded to the arrest, he told the Associated Press that China was aggressively involved in undermining US national security interests, often "with private organizations."

"Americans are grateful that our Canadian partners have arrested the chief treasurer," he added.

In a statement, Huawei stated that it has "complied with all applicable laws and regulations in which it operates, including the applicable export control and sanction laws and regulations of the UN, the US and the EU"

Tactics "Bullying

Analysis by BBC Monitoring

Ms. Meng's captivity is the most debated topic in Sina Weibo, China's equivalent to Twitter, where a story on this topic has had more than 33m hits this morning. Most comments express patriotism toward China and criticize the US and Canada for what they call "low" and "bullying."

One comment says, "They have resorted to such means because they can not compete with Huawei in the marketplace."

State media have reported that the Chinese embassy in Ottawa has criticized the arrest and said it has "strong resistance and strong protest" against a "grave violation of human rights" expressed.

The Xinhua State News Agency has quoted Huawei as saying that there is very little information about the charges and that Ms. Meng has not committed any wrongdoing. It added that "it believes that the Canadian and US legal systems will ultimately come to a just conclusion."

Why is Huawei a problem for the West?

Some Western governments fear that Beijing will gain access to the fifth generation (5G) to expand mobile communications and other communication networks via Huawei and its espionage capability, although the company insists that there is no state control.
Copyright
Reuters

Caption

Huawei branches in New Zealand, one of the nations recalling national security concerns

Security concerns recently led BT to block Huawei devices from the heart of the 5G network, which is being introduced in the UK.

New Zealand has blocked Huawei devices for security reasons after Australia imposed a similar ban on both Huawei and a communications company ZTE.

The US has filed a series of lawsuits against Chinese technology companies, with allegations such as cyber-security theft and violations of Iran sanctions.

Earlier this year, they banned US companies to effectively shut down their export to ZTE. The US later replaced the ban with a fine and government change.

The US has also stopped US companies from selling parts to Chinese chipmaker Fujian Jinhua.

The UK has not stopped firms from using Huawei, even though BT dominates The UK telecommunications network said it will not use the Chinese company's equipment this week in its "core" 5G infrastructure.

What are the sanctions in Iran?

Donald Trump reinstated US sanctions on Iran last month, which were removed as part of a 2015 nuclear deal.

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Mr Trump had vehemently opposed the agreement when Iran restricted its controversial nuclear activities against sanctions.

The sanctions again imposed on oil exports, shipping and banks – and all the core sectors of the Iranian economy.

Although there are some exceptions, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the US would "aggressively" target any company or organization that "bypassed our sanctions."


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