China cautions citizens on Canada travel amid rift over HK law

China – (warsoor) – China has warned its citizens to exercise caution in travelling to Canada amid deepening tensions between Beijing and Ottawa over a controversial security law passed by Beijing last week.

The warning, published on Monday by the Chinese embassy in Ottawa on the WeChat messaging app platform, said Chinese citizens should pay close attention to the local security situation. 

In its warning, the embassy cited “frequent violent actions” by law enforcement, but did not give specific examples about them, the Reuters news agency reported.

Last week, Beijing imposed a sweeping national security law, banning acts of subversion, secession, “terrorism” and collusion with foreign forces to suppress the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong.

On Friday, Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his country was suspending the extradition treaty with Hong Kong due to the legislation, which China condemned as interference in its internal affairs.

Canada also halted exports of sensitive military gear to the financial hub amid rising concerns about the impact of the security law on the city’s special rights.

On Monday, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told a regular news briefing that his country “strongly condemns” Canada’s move and “reserves the right to make further response”.

“All consequences arising therefrom will be borne by Canada. Any attempt to put pressure on China will never succeed,” Zhao said.

“China urges Canada to immediately correct its mistakes and stop interfering in Hong Kong affairs and China’s internal affairs in any way, so as to avoid further damage to China-Canada relations.”

Relations between Beijing and Ottawa have deteriorated since Canadian authorities arrested top Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou in December 2018. Meng is wanted in the United States on suspicion of violating sanctions against Iran.

China later detained two Canadians, including a former diplomat, on charges of espionage.

Source: Aljazeera