Michael Kovrig (left) and Michael Spavor, the two Canadians detained in China, are shown in these 2018 images taken from video. A powerful Republican senator and Trump ally says China is detaining two Canadians in harsh conditions and U.S. lawmakers won’t rest until they are freed. Idaho Sen. Jim Risch, who chairs the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, tells The Canadian Press that Canadians Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor are being treated worse than Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, who is out on bail in Vancouver. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP

Canadian consular officials in China meet with detainee Michael Kovrig

Canadian government says the men’s detentions are ‘arbitrary’

Global Affairs Canada says detained Canadian Michael Kovrig has received another visit from consular officials in China.

Kovrig, a diplomat on leave, and the entrepreneur Michael Spavor were detained in China on Dec. 10 but have not had access to lawyers or been formally charged.

It was the seventh time consular officials have seen Kovrig since he was detained, while Spavor has had six such visits.

The Canadian government says the men’s detentions are “arbitrary” and is calling for their immediate release.

About a month after they were arrested, Global Affairs warned Canadians travelling to China to do so with a “high degree of caution” because of the arbitrary application of local laws.

Global Affairs notes a number of countries back Canada’s position on the matter, including the United States, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Spain and Denmark, as well as NATO, the European Union and the G7.

READ MORE: China holds appeal hearing for former Abbotsford man sentenced to death

Last week, the U.S. Senate passed a rare unanimous resolution praising Canada for upholding the rule of law in arresting Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou in December on an American warrant. The U.S. wants to extradite Meng and prosecute her for allegedly lying to banks to avoid U.S. sanctions on Iran.

Canadian officials have complained that Kovrig and Spavor are being held in retaliation for Meng’s arrest.

Meng is free on bail pending an extradition hearing.

Consular visits typically include assessing the well-being of the men, trying to get them medical attention if needed and helping them communicate with loved ones.

Because of privacy laws, Global Affairs Canada is saying nothing further about the visit.

READ MORE: Arrested Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou to seek stay of extradition proceedings

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

RDCK to implement new emergency alert notification system

System also includes sends alerts for water advisories

From baseball stars to forest fires: Southeast Fire Centre water bomber has an interesting past

Tanker 489 is stationed in Castlegar this year, but in the 1960s it belonged to the L.A. Dodgers.

Traffic finally eases along Arrow Lakes ferry routes

Motorists were stuck for up to six hours in ferry lineups over the weekend

Shoppers Drug Mart launches in-store virtual service at several B.C. stores

The service is now available in 12 rural B.C. communities and will expand province-wide in August

Milestone RCMP Cops For Kids fundraiser ride going virtual

You can join and help RCMP raise funds for families and possibly win 20th anniversary cycling shirt

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

BREAKING: Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

Bringing support to Indigenous students and communities, while fulfilling a dream

Mitacs is a nonprofit organization that operates research and training programs

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

NHL’s Canadian hubs offer little economic benefit, but morale boost is valuable: experts

Games are slated to start Aug. 1 with six Canadian teams qualifying for the 24-team resumption of play

‘Made in the Cowichan Valley’ coming to a wine bottle near you

Cowichan Valley has the honour of being the first sub-GI outside of the Okanagan

VIDEO: Vancouver Island cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

Most Read