OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Wednesday he hoped for good news soon about two citizens who have been held in China for the last two years in what Ottawa has described as a case of hostage diplomacy.
China arrested businessman Michael Spavor and former diplomat Michael Kovrig in December 2018, shortly after Canadian police picked up Huawei Technologies Co Ltd Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou on a U.S. warrant. The two men face spying charges.
Asked by Global News whether he thought there would be good news for the men’s families before the New Year, Trudeau replied: “I certainly hope so.”
Canada has consistently said the return of the two men is its top foreign policy priority.
“They are just an inspiration to me ... we’re doing everything we can, both directly with China and with allies,” Trudeau said.
Trudeau’s office was not immediately available for comment.
A well-placed Ottawa source, who requested anonymity given the sensitivity of the situation, said they had not heard of any recent developments.
Earlier this month, Reuters reported that U.S. prosecutors were discussing a deal with Meng’s lawyers to resolve criminal charges against her.
The men are in good mental and physical condition, Ottawa’s ambassador to Beijing said last week.
Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Bernadette Baum
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