A media report is quoting Canada’s ambassador to China as saying it would be “great for Canada” if the United States drops an extradition request against a Huawei executive, the day after he apologized for a politically explosive slip of the tongue when discussing the case.
StarMetro Vancouver says John McCallum made the comment today to one of its reporters during a charity luncheon in downtown Vancouver.
The comment follows an apology McCallum issued Thursday, saying he misspoke earlier in the week when he told a group of Chinese-language journalists in Toronto about Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, listing several arguments he thought could help her with her case.
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Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer had called on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to fire McCallum, saying the remarks raised concerns about the politicization of the Meng case but Trudeau came to McCallum’s defence.
WATCH: McCallum admits he “misspoke” on Meng Wanzhou extradition case
Trudeau said his government’s focus is on getting detained Canadians Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor home safely from China and ensuring their rights are respected and recalling McCallum wouldn’t achieve that.
Global Affairs Canada did not immediately respond to a request for comment.