What we know about the ar­rest of Huawei’s CFO

Cy­ber­se­cu­rity ex­perts urg­ing Canada to limit com­pany’s role in high-tech devel­op­ment

StarMetro Vancouver - - VANCOUVER - JEREMY NUT­TALL

News broke Wed­nes­day that one of the most prom­i­nent ex­ec­u­tives with Chi­nese telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions giant Huawei had been ar­rested on Dec. 1 in Van­cou­ver.

The ex­plo­sive an­nounce­ment of Wanzhou Meng’s ar­rest fol­lows re­peated warn­ings from cy­ber­se­cu­rity ex­perts, who are urg­ing Canada to fol­low other coun­tries in lim­it­ing the com­pany’s role in the devel­op­ment of high­tech com­mu­ni­ca­tions.

Po­lit­i­cal ob­servers are ex­press­ing con­cern in the me­dia that the ar­rest could dam­age re­la­tions be­tween the United States and China as well as be­tween Canada and China.

Starmetro will con­tinue to up­date this file as the story de­vel­ops.

WHAT WE KNOW Who was ar­rested: Meng was taken into cus­tody while trans­fer­ring planes in Van­cou­ver on Dec. 1. The re­quest came from au­thor­i­ties in New York. Meng is listed as the deputy chair­per­son and chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer of Huawei and is the daugh­ter of Zhengfei Ren, the founder of the com­pany. In a state­ment, Huawei said the United States is seek­ing the ex­tra­di­tion of Meng to face un­known charges stem­ming from the Eastern Dis­trict of New York. Ac­cord­ing to the Ex­tra­di­tion Act, a per­son must be fac­ing charges for an of­fence con­sid­ered crim­i­nal in both Canada and the coun­try seek­ing ex­tra­di­tion.

The Chi­nese em­bassy is out­raged: China’s em­bassy in Ot­tawa is­sued a state­ment shortly af­ter news of the ar­rest broke, ac­cus­ing Canada and the United States of vi­o­lat­ing Meng’s hu­man rights and call­ing for the “per­sonal free­dom” of Meng to be re­stored. The em­bassy in­sisted on Meng’s in­no­cence, though the charges are un­spec­i­fied.

Huawei is no stranger to con­tro­versy: The telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions giant has been banned from par­tic­i­pat­ing in the devel­op­ment of 5G net­works in Aus­tralia and the United States, and the BBC re­ported ear­lier this week that the United King­dom has limited the com­pany’s ac­cess to its 5G net­works.


The Chi­nese em­bassy is call­ing for Wanzhou Meng’s per­sonal free­dom to be re­stored.

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