U.S. Justice Department Says It Will Seek to Extradite Huawei CFO from Canada

The United States has confirmed its plan to pursue the extradition of a senior Huawei executive and are expected to soon file a formal request with Canada.

Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP

According to a new report from Reuters, the U.S. Department of Justice confirmed today that it will continue seeking the extradition of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, guaranteeing months of multi-country tension over the high-profile case. The department said it would meet a January 30 deadline to formally request Meng’s extradition from Canada.

“We will continue to pursue the extradition of defendant Ms. Meng Wanzhou, and will meet all deadlines set by the U.S./Canada Extradition Treaty,” Justice Department spokesman Marc Raimondi said. “We greatly appreciate Canada’s continuing support in our mutual efforts to enforce the rule of law.”

Meng was arrested in Vancouver, British Columbia, on December 1 on U.S. fraud charges related to U.S. sanctions law. Not long after, Chinese authorities detained two Canadian men on security charges, widely seen as retribution for Canada’s arrest of Meng.

Meng is Huawei’s chief financial officer and the daughter of its founder, Ren Zhengfei. Huawei has close ties to China’s military and is considered one of the country’s most successful international enterprises, operating in the high-tech sphere where China hopes to establish dominance.

As US officials today confirmed plans to pursue Meng’s extradition, China accused both the US and Canada of “arbitrarily abusing” their extradition treaty in this case.

China’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Meng’s case was out of the ordinary and Canada’s extradition treaty with the US infringed on the “safety and legitimate rights and interests of Chinese citizens.”

“We also urge the US to correct their mistakes and withdraw the arrest warrant for Meng Wanzhou,” Hua said.

Hua’s remarks came after more than 100 academics and former diplomats signed a letter calling on China to release two Canadians detained in apparent retaliation for Meng’s arrest.

A spokesperson from Canada’s Justice Ministry said Monday that it hasn’t yet received the full extradition request from the United States. The deadline for filing the formal request is January 30 and a court hearing has been scheduled for February 6.

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