fredag 3. september 2021

Canadian jailed in China accused of taking military photos

Chinese state media have accused the jailed Canadian Michael Spavor of supplying photographs of military equipment to Michael Kovrig in repeated acts of espionage, offering rare details of the allegations against the two men. The two men were arrested in December 2018, just days after Canadian officials arrested the Chinese executive Meng Wanzhou. Last month Spavor, who lived in China and arranged tours to North Korea, was sentenced to 11 years in prison and deportation from China. Kovrig, a former diplomat turned analyst for the International Crisis Group, was also tried in secret in March. Kovrig is yet to have his verdict or sentence announced.

On Thursday China’s state-backed tabloid the Global Times accused Spavor of being a “key informant” for Kovrig, who is accused – but not yet convicted – of espionage. Citing an anonymous source it said Spavor took photographs and videos of military equipment, which it deemed “second-tier state secrets” and “illegally provided some of those photos to people outside China” and to Kovrig.