China refutes United States travel advice

Geneva Stokes
January 7, 2019

The travel guidance issued by the United States which maintained the warning at "Level 2" also warned about extra security checks and increased police presence in Xinjiang and Tibet.

And U.S. citizens may be subjected to prolonged interrogations and extended detention for reasons related to "state security". "From January to December, the American people that travelled to China reached 2.3 million, higher than the number of Chinese people travelling to the U.S.", said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang.

"I and the other members of the delegation will engage with Chinese officials in as constructive way as possible, with the obvious objective of seeing these two Canadians returned safely and as soon as possible", Cooper said. The arrests are widely viewed as Chinese retaliation for Canada's arrest of high-tech executive Meng Wanzhou, Huawei's chief financial officer, by the RCMP in Vancouver at the request of the United States. The U.S. alleges Meng misled American banks in a bid to get around American sanctions on Iran.

Cooper said that despite planning to discuss the Canadians' detention, the goal of the trip is to engage directly with Chinese government officials to discuss a broad range of issues, such as trade.

"The message from Global Affairs Canada was that it was better that we go than not go", Cooper said.

"China does not recognise dual nationality".

"This outnumbers the proportion of Chinese people visiting the United States", Lu said.

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"We hope the USA side will make more efforts to promote exchanges and mutual trust between Chinese and USA people rather than the opposite", he said.

December 13: Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer accuses Trudeau of taking a "naive approach" to China, leaving Canada without "the leverage that we might otherwise have" to resolve the situation.

The warning comes after China last month detained two Canadians on charges of activities that endanger China's security.

"China's economy is facing some headwinds and so is going to want to attract businesspeople, is going to want to show it's open for normal business", he said.

December 14: Canadian officials are granted consular access to Kovrig, and McCallum meets with him in Beijing. He said such figures could answer the question of whether China was safe for foreigners.

January 3: In a press conference, China's prosecutor general Zhang Jun says Kovrig and Spavor "without a doubt" violated Chinese law.

He reiterated Canada's call for the release of the two men.

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