Chinese Authorities Identify Third Canadian Detained in Diplomatic Spat

Chinese Authorities Identify Third Canadian Detained in Diplomatic Spat


BEIJING — China acknowledged on Thursday that the authorities there had detained a third Canadian citizen, a teacher from Alberta, making her the most recent casualty in a diplomatic standoff between the two countries.

The Foreign Ministry said that “a female Canadian citizen” identified as Sarah D. McIver had been working illegally and was being held in administrative detention. The Canadian government announced the detention on Wednesday but did not release Ms. McIver’s name.

Ms. McIver’s detention came days after the arrests of Michael Kovrig, a former Canadian diplomat who was working for a nongovernmental organization in China, and Michael Spavor, an entrepreneur specializing in business with North Korea.

The three detentions appear to be in retaliation for Canada’s arrest of Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of Huawei, the giant Chinese technology company. Ms. Meng was detained on Dec. 1 while in transit in Vancouver, on her way from Hong Kong to Mexico.

Ms. Meng was arrested at the request of the United States. The Trump administration is seeking her extradition.

At her bail hearing, a Canadian official said Ms. Meng had been accused by the Americans of tricking banks into transactions involving Huawei-controlled entities that violated United States sanctions against Iran.

Ms. Meng is out on bail. A court is expected to rule on whether she will be extradited to the United States.

Ms. Meng’s case has provoked a diplomatic crisis between China and Canada. The Chinese government insists Ms. Meng is being wrongfully held and should be released immediately.

The three detentions by the Chinese government are being seen as ratcheting up the pressure on Canada to release Ms. Meng. China also appears to be trying to tell Washington that it should not demand the extradition of Ms. Meng from Canada to the United States.

A Canadian newspaper, The National Post, reported that Ms. McIver had been teaching at a school in China.



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