Meng Wanzhou, the daughter of Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei’s founder, was arrested on Saturday (December 1st) in Canada and is at risk of extradition to the United States.
The Chinese giant’s financial director, Ms. Meng was arrested last week in Vancouver and is awaiting extradition to the United States. According to press reports, Washington suspects it of violating the embargo imposed on Iran. The incident was not part of Ms. Meng’s career plan, which seemed set to become one of the most powerful businesswomen on the planet the day she would succeed her father.
The details of the arrest were not revealed, but the United States investigated Huawei about possible sanctions violations against Iran.
This comes after Reuters announced in April that US authorities have been investigating Huawei since 2016 for allegedly shipping products of US origin to Iran and other countries, in violation of US export and sanctions laws.
She started as a secretary, but seemed to have left to succeed her father at the head of Huawei, world number two mobile phone. Meng Wanzhou had not planned to end up in a Canadian prison in the middle of the China-US strategic rivalry.
Meng, who is the daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei, is scheduled to appear in court, a spokesman for the Canadian Ministry of Justice said, according to the report. The Chinese Embassy in Canada has since criticized Canada and the United States for this arrest in a statement, and has also called for Meng’s immediate release.
“The Canadian police, at the request of the United States, arrested a Chinese citizen who had not broken any US or Canadian law,” the embassy said in a short statement posted on its website.
“China has already made solemn declarations to the United States and Canada, asking them to immediately correct their misbehavior and restore Ms. Meng Wanzhou’s freedom.”
Reacting to the arrest, Huawei’s representatives told The New York Times: “The company has received very little information on the charges and is not aware of any wrongdoing by Ms. Meng.”