OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed on Thursday that President Donald Trump made good on his pledge to raise the plight of the two Canadians imprisoned in China with President Xi Jinping.
Trudeau says Trump did raise the cases of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor with Xi during their meeting at the G20 leaders’ summit in Japan this past weekend, just as he pledged to do in their White House meeting last month.
Trudeau also shot back at a Chinese government spokesman who accused Canada on Wednesday of being “naive” in assuming that Trump did it any favours by raising the matter with Xi.
Geng Shuang, a spokesman for China’s foreign ministry, twice derided Canada for relying on a “so-called” ally and said China would allow no interference in its affairs.
On the contrary, Trudeau says, Canada, the United States and other allies are telling China they’re all concerned about its behaviour and that it needs to follow the rule of law and other international standards.
Trudeau says Canada, along with its allies, will continue to push that message on Beijing as China’s international economic influence grows, and while still trying to ensure the safety of Kovrig and Spavor.