China’s Foreign Ministry has rejected the United States’ charges of fraud against Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou, which led to her detainment for several years, calling them “totally fabricated” and an act of political persecution.
Meng – who is the daughter of Huawei CEO Ren Zhengfei – finally returned home to China on Saturday following years of detainment in Canada. She had been arrested by Canadian police at Vancouver International Airport in December 2018 due to an extradition request from the United States, which accused her of fraud in an attempt to circumvent its sanctions on Iran.
The US pulled its charges and extradition request on Friday.
On Saturday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying claimed that the US and Canada’s detainment of Meng had been “political persecution” and that the “so-called ‘fraud’ allegation” against her was “totally fabricated.”
“It has long been a fully proven fact that this is an incident of political persecution against a Chinese citizen, an act designed to hobble Chinese high-tech companies,” the spokesperson said. “What the United States and Canada have done is a typical case of arbitrary detention.”
Shenzhen’s Ping’an International Financial Center skyscraper welcomed Meng home on Saturday with a message of support lit up on the side of the building, while supporters of Meng welcomed her home with signs at Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport.
The Ping’an International Financial Center, a major landmark in Shenzhen, S China’s Guangdong Province was lit up on Saturday evening to welcome #MengWanzhou’s return home. pic.twitter.com/3zYG6WXszw
A charted flight carrying Huawei’s CFO Meng Wanzhou arrives at Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport on Saturday evening. People at the airport are holding welcome home banners cheering Meng’s return, hailing her as a national hero. https://t.co/PHzwysL9VSpic.twitter.com/j5a6ArClkp
As her plane landed, Meng expressed relief at having “finally returned home.”
“After more than 1,000 days of suffering, I finally returned to the embrace of my motherland,” she said, adding that “waiting in a foreign country was full of suffering.”
Just hours after Meng’s release on Friday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that two Canadian citizens accused of espionage and collecting sensitive information, Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, had been released from a Chinese prison and were on their way home.
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