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As unfavourable views of China rise, Canadians are split over wisdom of Meng arrest

News that China is now moving to prosecute two Canadian citizens who have been imprisoned without charge for a year represents the latest development in ongoing diplomatic strife between the two countries.

The diplomatic crisis, which began with the arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou and subsequent detentions of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor under unclear pretences, has complicated the trade and investment relationship between the two nations.

While the Trudeau government considers its options to resolve simmering tensions, Canadians are growing more frustrated with China.

The latest public opinion study from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute shows unfavourable views of the country rising considerably over the past year from 51 per cent in 2018 to 66 per cent today.

Further, the data reveal an increasing number of Canadians saying human rights should be more important in Canada’s dealings with China (70% say this) than trade opportunities.

As to the ongoing state of affairs, half of Canadians say that in retrospect, this country should not have arrested Meng in the first place. The same number also say the federal government should forego court proceedings and intervene directly to end the extradition process, in order to repair the strained relationship with China.

More Key Findings:

  • Seven-in-ten (69%) say that Canada should not allow Huawei to be involved with the production of future 5G mobile networks in this country due to security concerns
  • Just over half of Canadians (54%) say they expect the relationship between Canada and China to be repaired soon and get back to firmer ground
  • Nine-in-ten Canadians (90%) say that China cannot be trusted on the rule of law and upholding human rights

Read the rest of the story here: www.angusreid.org

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