China ‘strongly deplores’ investigation into interference, emba*sy warns of ‘consequences’ – National

Beijing “strongly deplores” the investigation into Canada’s foreign interference, and the Chinese emba*sy warns of “consequences” if the country does not abandon its “ideological bias.”

The comments from the Chinese emba*sy in Canada come after the federal government announced Thursday the opening of a public inquiry, calling on a Quebec judge to lead the probe after months of research.

Allegations of Chinese foreign interference in Canadian elections and society dominated the political scene in Ottawa for much of the year; the new investigation will investigate not only Beijing, but also Russia as well as other foreign states and non-state actors in the 2019 and 2021 general elections at the national and constituency levels.

“On September 7, the Canadian government announced the launch of a public inquiry into foreign interference by China and other countries, and continued to exaggerate the lies of so-called “China interference in internal affairs of Canada. China strongly deplores and firmly opposes this,” an emba*sy spokesperson said in an email on Friday.

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“China urges the Canadian side to abandon ideological prejudices, stop spreading lies and misinformation about China, stop misleading the public, and stop undermining China-Canada relations. Otherwise, Canada will have to bear the consequences.”

The spokesperson did not specify what the consequences might be.

Public Security Minister Dominic LeBlanc, who is also Minister of Democratic Institutions, revealed Thursday that Marie-Josée Hogue, a Puisne judge of the Quebec Court of Appeal, had been chosen to lead the investigation under the Inquiries Act.

Hogue’s appointment comes after months of searching for a judge to lead an inquiry after former Governor General David Johnston, the special rapporteur investigating allegations of foreign interference, resigned from his post in June. due to accusations of bias.

LeBlanc added that Hogue will be required to submit an interim report by February 29, 2024, and a final report in December of the same year; Hogue will take the helm on September 18.

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“This is a global challenge for democracies. China is not the only country seeking to interfere inappropriately,” LeBlanc said, noting that he spoke with his British counterpart over the summer about the challenges they see related to foreign interference.

“We didn’t want to limit it to just one country. »

Foreign interference has been a persistent issue in Ottawa this year, as the Globe and Mail and PKBNEWS reported allegations of Chinese interference in Canada.

As the news broke, so did revelations that Beijing had attempted to target sitting politicians, including Conservative MP Michael Chong.

In May, the federal government confirmed a Globe and Mail report that CSIS had information in 2021 that Beijing was seeking ways to intimidate Chong and his relatives in Hong Kong.

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China has denied allegations that it targeted Chong after the MP voted in February 2021 in favor of a motion in the House of Commons condemning China’s treatment of its Uyghur minority as genocide.

The feud led both countries to expel diplomats in a retaliatory move and prompted CSIS to change its policy to notify MPs of threats, no matter how serious.

NDP MP Jenny Kwan has since said CSIS told her she was the target of Chinese government interference. She said attempts at interference date back to the 2019 federal election, but are believed to still be ongoing.

On Friday, the emba*sy spokesperson reiterated China’s denial of the interference allegations and said some Canadian politicians and media are “spreading lies and disinformation” to discredit China.

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While relations between the two countries are at an all-time low, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday that a rapprochement with China was not possible at the moment.

“Reconciliation? No,” he said.

&copy 2023 PKBNEWS, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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