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Thursday May 30, 2024

China’s ambassador to Canada leaves his post

China’s foreign ministry said earlier that Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu held talks with visiting Canadian Deputy Foreign Minister David Morrison

By Reuters
April 22, 2024
Chinese Ambassador to Canada Cong Peiwu. — Bloomberg/File
Chinese Ambassador to Canada Cong Peiwu. — Bloomberg/File

OTTAWA: Chinese ambassador to Canada, Cong Peiwu, who has served since 2019, has left his post and returned to China, a source familiar with the matter said on Sunday, with the news emerging during a senior Canadian diplomat’s visit to the Asian nation.

Further details into why he left his post were not immediately available. The Chinese embassy in Ottawa did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

China’s foreign ministry said earlier that Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu held talks with visiting Canadian Deputy Foreign Minister David Morrison and the two discussed “China-Canada relations and other issues of mutual interest and concern.” The Chinese ambassador’s departure was first reported by the Globe and Mail. Cong’s posting ended on April 9 and came as a surprise to some in the diplomatic corps because of its abruptness, the newspaper said, citing sources.

Relations between Ottawa and Beijing have been tense since 2018 when Canadian police detained Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of Chinese telecoms equipment giant Huawei Technologies, on a U.S. warrant. Later, Canadians Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig were taken into custody by China. China had detained the two Canadian men for more than 1,000 days in a step that was at the centre of Ottawa and Washington’s dispute with Beijing.