Published On: Tue, May 9th, 2023

In a Retaliatory Action, China has Expelled a Canadian Diplomat

Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly.jpg

In retribution for the Canadian government sending back a Chinese ambassador accused of attempting to scare a Canadian Member of Parliament, China has removed Canada’s consul from Shanghai.

This Monday, Canada ordered the Chinese ambassador Zhao Wei to depart the country after labeling her a “persona non grata” and deeming her to be a security risk.

In retaliation, China issued an order on Tuesday for the deportation of Jennifer Lynn Lalonde, who served as an ambassador at the Canadian consulate in Shanghai.

According to a statement issued by Beijing, China maintains that it retains the right to take additional action.

Both ambassadors have been given a grace period of five days to leave the nations.

The censures represent a substantial worsening in ties between the governments of Beijing and Ottawa in the wake of accusations of what is supposed to be Chinese political involvement in Canada.

After Michael Chong, a lawmaker in Canada’s opposition party, accused China of violating the rights of its citizens, Canada charged China with retaliating against Chong’s family members in Hong Kong.

On Thursday of last week, Canada demanded to speak with China’s ambassador in order to reaffirm that it would not accept involvement in its internal affairs.

On Monday, the Minister of Foreign Affairs for Canada, Mélanie Joly, issued a “persona non grata” order against Mr. Zhao. This is a Latin expression that means an undesirable person.

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Both China and Ms. Lalonde announced that the move was unethical, and China referred to the latter’s declaration as a “reciprocal countermeasure.”

The action taken by Ottawa comes after a Canadian security assessment, which was published in the Mail newspaper and Globe, charged Mr. Zhao of having participated in collecting data regarding Mr. Chong, 51, in response to his loud criticism of China’s handling of its Uighur minority community. The move comes as a result of Mr. Chong’s condemnation of China’s handling of its Uighur minority community.

According to the report, Canada’s intelligence agency has reason to suspect that China requested information about Mr. Chong’s family members in Hong Kong in a move to discourage anti-China attitudes.

In 2021, the legislator introduced a proposal to parliament that labeled the plight of Uighurs in China as extermination. The allegations have been refuted by China, which shortly thereafter imposed sanctions on Mr. Chong.

On Monday, Ms. Joly stated that Canada would not accept any foreign intervention in our country’s affairs and she added that the decision to remove the ambassador had been made after a thorough examination of all of the elements that were at play.

Since then, Canada’s intelligence service has been given the instruction to immediately relay information concerning threats to politicians in government and the families of those members.

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According to a statement that was released by the Chinese Ministry of International Affairs on Tuesday, China has strongly condemned and firmly opposed this and has registered serious démarches and a strong complaint to Canada over the matter.

The allegations that China pursued Mr. Chong as well as his family prompted China to level an accusation of “defamation and slander” against Canada last week.

Mr. Chong, a member of the Conservative Party, has accused the Liberal Party in power of mishandling the situation, and, on Monday, he stated that the government ought not to have waited two years to come to a conclusion on the problem.

These charges come in the wake of other intelligence files that have been leaked to media outlets in Canada and have implicated China in trying to meddle in the elections in Canada.

In March, Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau made an announcement on the appointment of a neutral special envoy to look into the allegations of meddling.