China is warning of “consequences” for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government unless it stops spreading “lies and false information” about alleged interference in Canadian affairs.
(Bloomberg) — China is warning of “consequences” for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government unless it stops spreading “lies and false information” about alleged interference in Canadian affairs.
The Chinese embassy in Ottawa issued a stern statement on Friday, a day after Canada announced a public inquiry into meddling by China, Russia and other state and non-state actors in Canadian national elections in 2019 and 2021.
“China strongly deplores and firmly opposes this,” an embassy spokesman said in the statement. “China urges the Canadian side to abandon its ideological bias, stop hyping up China-related lies and false information, stop misleading the public and stop undermining China-Canada relations. Otherwise, Canada will have to bear the consequences.”
The inquiry comes after months of allegations from anonymous national security sources in media articles that China sought to boost Canadian candidates who were pro-Beijing while suppressing those who took a harder stance against President Xi Jinping’s administration.
Trudeau said in an interview with Bloomberg News on Thursday that there was no room for political “rapprochement” with China as Xi’s muscular foreign policy has made it impossible for the two countries to have a normal relationship.
The embassy spokesman, however, said China has always adhered to the principle of non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs. To the contrary, he said some in Canada have sought to undermine China’s security and stability by supporting “anti-China separatist activities” on issues including Taiwan, the Xinjiang region and Hong Kong.
“We have no interest in and have never interfered in Canada’s internal affairs and elections,” he said. “With ulterior political motives, some Canadian politicians and media have been spreading lies and disinformation against China for a long time.”
The statement didn’t elaborate on the potential “consequences” Canada could face. Earlier this year, the two countries each expelled a diplomat over the dispute.
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