Ottawa, ON (June 25, 2020) — Alliance Canada Hong Kong (ACHK) calls attention to the 123 detained Canadians in China and demands the Canadian government commit itself to the same attention in protecting our citizens. With Meng’s case, the Chinese government is trying to lure Canada into a hostage situation, where the lives and safety of Canadians are
used as a bargaining chip to trade political favours.
Engaging in hostage diplomacy sets a dangerous precedent that will put a target on all Canadians in China. Since Meng’s arrest, thirteen Canadians have been detained in China, Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig are isolated as the primary targets of the Chinese government. If Canada compromises in favour of the Chinese government, it shows any
hostile foreign country can hold Canadians hostage to threaten and pressure the Canadian government into compliance. We must not buy into the Chinese government’s narrative that diminishes Canada’s autonomy and strength on the international stage.
It has been China’s intention to alienate itself from global democracies. Xi Jinping spoke about his global ambitions and Beijing’s role to “guide the international community to jointly build a more just and reasonably new world order” in 2017. The Chinese Communist Party has been rewriting global order in their favour, exporting its authoritarian control onto
Canada must take a strong and principled stance, driving a multilateral approach to take a united stance against China’s systematic hostage diplomacy. The international community needs to stand together in calling for the release of global citizens who are imprisoned for politically-driven reasons in China.
It is undeniable that the Chinese government is holding foreign nationals within China hostage as chips to bargain with democratic governments. There is strength in the unity of democratic societies and international allies, It is therefore important for Canada to not be the first state to kneel before the CCP’s autocracy, for it will only be the start of the collapse
of global democracy.
● Coordinated response with other democratic societies to demand the release of foreign nationals who are arrested for politically motivated crimes;
● Investigate feasibility to bring back Canadians via international institutional avenues, such as the International Court of Justice & Human Rights Council;
● Investigate and combat foreign interference into Canadian institutions, through a national registry of foreign agents and national foreign influence transparency legislation.
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