Canadian officials meet again with Michael Spavor in China, reiterate call for detainees’ release
Canadian consular officials in China have visited Michael Spavor and are currently providing support services to him and his family, according to a statement released by the government Tuesday.
The statement by Global Affairs Canada explained that officials are continuing to seek more access to Spavor, who has been detained for nearly a month in China. It added that details on his detainment and their interactions cannot be released under the Privacy Act.
This is the second time Canadian officials have been able to meet with Spavor, who is accused of endangering Chinese national security.
Spavor, a Calgary-born entrepreneur, is director of the Paektu Cultural Exchange, an organization that facilitates sporting, cultural, tourism and business exchanges with North Korea — a largely isolated country subject to a number of international sanctions over its nuclear-weapons program.
Canadian officials are also continuing to provide consular services to Michael Kovrig, another Canadian who has been detained in China in recent weeks.
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The detention of Spavor and Kovrig came shortly after Canadian authorities in Vancouver arrested Meng Wanzhou, a senior executive with Chinese firm Huawei Technologies who is wanted by the U.S. on fraud charges.
In Tuesday’s statement, the government reiterated its concern over the issue.
“The Canadian government remains deeply concerned by the arbitrary detention by Chinese authorities of these two Canadians since last month and continues to call for their immediate release,” it read.
Canada, along with its allies in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany and Australia, has pushed China to follow international rules in the detainments.
Meanwhile, there has been growing concern of Spavor’s condition among his loved ones.
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Andray Abrahamian, Spavor’s friend, explained that a GoFundMe page he organized to help campaign for his release was recently shutdown.
Abrahamian said the fundraising effort was intended to create “a little pot of money” to help with Spavor’s legal fees or other costs and, when the stressful experience is over, to aid his recovery and readjustment.
“I worry about many things, starting with his health and emotional well-being,” Abrahamian said.
— With files from The Canadian Press
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