Time for Liberal government to drop ‘fiction’ that China is our friend, ex-diplomat MPs warn

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Mulroney was supposed to appear alongside former Ambassadors John McCallum and Robert Wright, but these two declined the invitation to appear. The committee voted to officially summon them to testify.

David Mulroney, then Canada’s Ambassador to China, in 2011. ChinaFotoPress / Getty Images / File

In June, a group of high-profile Canadians wrote a letter calling for a prisoner swap with Meng to recover Spavor and Kovrig, which Prime Minister Justin Trudeau quickly rejected. Mulroney said this letter was concerning.

“It worries me when I see people who are opinion leaders who seem to lack the energy to defend our national interests,” he said.

He said he believed prominent figures, former politicians and government officials doing business with China should be outspoken about any trade connection.

“If you choose to go and work for China or another country, you can do it, but you have to be transparent. ”

Mulroney pleaded for Canada to stand alongside its allies in putting pressure on China. He said China can punish a country economically, but cannot do it to a coalition of united countries.

“The reality is that Canada has what China needs,” he said. “China needs the products that Canada, Australia and the United States produce.”

MPs have also heard warnings about China’s motives in Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Hong Kong becomes a second Tibet

The unofficial head of Tibet’s exiled government has warned Canadian lawmakers that China is trying to subjugate Hong Kong and Taiwan as it did for his country more than 70 years ago.

Lobsang Sangay, chairman of the Tibetan central administration, said Hong Kong is losing its freedoms like his country once did.

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