China Warns Against Travel to US and Canada
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In response to the unlawful December 1 arrest and detention of Chinese tech giant Huawei’s chief financial officer Sabrina Meng Wanzhou by Canadian authorities in Vancouver at the behest of the Trump regime, facing possible unacceptable extradition to the US, Beijing warned its high-tech personnel last month against traveling to America unless it’s essential.
If need to come, China advised removal of any potentially sensitive data or other material from cell phones and laptops.
Tensions between both countries are strained over Meng’s arrest, along with provocative Pentagon incursions close to Chinese territory in the South China Sea and Taiwan Strait, separating the island state from the mainland. Beijing considers it a breakaway province.
A previous article discussed Chinese President Xi Jinping’s order to step up military training and exercises, saying the country’s armed forces must “prepare for a comprehensive military struggle from a new starting point,” adding:
“Preparation for war and combat must be deepened to ensure an efficient response in times of emergency.”
Xi’s remarks followed enactment of the US Asia Reassurance Initiative Act (ARIA), discussed in a separate article – legislation authorizing funding for Washington’s imperial Indo/Pacific agenda, mainly by its military footprint in a part of the world not its own, the way it operates globally.
In December, the Trump regime’s Beijing embassy revoked 10-year multiple-entry visas issued to certain Chinese researchers specializing in Sino/US relations – on the pretext of tightening security, subjecting targeted researchers to intrusive cell phone and computer checks, further heightening tensions, part of a strategy to contain China.
Chinese tech and business officials are wary about foreign travel, given how Meng was mistreated. US tech firms are concerned about whether their personnel in China may be retaliated against over what happened to her.
A number of Canadians were arrested, most released, several still held, China responding to Meng’s mistreatment with toughness. Ottawa acted as a US proxy, detained Canadians likely to be held until she’s released and free to resume normal activities.
Trump hardliners reportedly urged DLT to ban Chinese students from studying in the US over alleged security concerns, including claims about intellectual property theft, forced technology transfers, and so-called unfair trade practices.
Washington considers China a strategic competitor. Tensions are likely to increase in the new year. On Tuesday, Beijing issued a separate alert about travel to Canada, warning its nationals against arbitrary detentions over what happened to Meng.
Ottawa issued a similar warning after China sentenced its national Lloyd Schellenberg to death for illicit drug offenses, an unusually harsh ruling.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded to his sentence, saying “(i)t is of extreme concern to us as a government…that China has chosen to begin to arbitrarily apply (the) death penalty…as in this case facing a Canadian.”
Beijing is justifiably furious over Ottawa’s mistreatment of Meng – likely to soften Schellenberg’s sentence or free him to return home if the Trudeau regime releases Meng from house arrest and lets her leave the country.
China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying said Ottawa “should remind its citizens…never come to China to commit serious offenses such as smuggling or trafficking drugs.” Guilty individuals “will definitely face serious consequences.”
Schellenberg’s case was politicized over Meng’s mistreatment. Beijing prioritizes her release. It’s likely to respond in kind with regard to detained Canadian nationals.
The ball is in Canada’s court. Trudeau can likely resolve things by reversing his action against Meng. Perhaps China’s toughness got his attention enough to do the right thing.
My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”