Business Standard

China formally arrests 2 Canadians on state secrets charges

IANS  |  Beijing 

has formally arrested two Canadians - who had already been detained for over five months - on charges of gathering, supplying and trading in state secrets with foreign powers in a move likely to up tensions between and

has been charged with "stealing and providing intelligence for foreign forces" and former has been accused of "gathering state secrets and intelligence for foreign forces", the said on Thursday.

"has taken compulsory measures against those individuals according to law. Everything in is done according to law and we hope doesn't interfere with other countries' laws and won't make irresponsible remarks about China's judicial proceedings," said

According to Lu, the Chinese authorities began the investigations as per their rules and regulations and the rights of the accused would be ensured, news reported.

The two men were arrested in December 2018 just after Canadian officials detained Chinese Huawei's after the US activated an arrest warrant.

believes that Meng has been involved in financial fraud and espionage linked to alleged breaches of US sanctions on

Although has avoided linking the two cases, analysts believe that China's move is a tit-for-tat countermeasure to pressure into releasing Meng.

Meanwhile, the has reiterated its concern over the fate of Kovrig and Spavor who went missing soon after they were interrogated by the Chinese authorities.

Spavor, 43, from Calgary, holds a degree in international relations and is among the few Westerners to have met and mingled with North Korean leader

Spavor founded the Paektu Cultural Exchange, a firm with offices in London, Pyongyang, and the northeastern Chinese city of It organizes, among other things, tourist visits to and exchange programmes.

Kovrig is a former who served in Beijing and the UN and was in charge of organizing Canadian Justin Trudeau's visit to China in December 2017.

At the time of his arrest, Kovrig was in China, working for the non-profit



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, May 16 2019. 19:14 IST