Meng Wanzhou: Huawei executive to be released from Canada back to China after three-year row

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US prosecutors have reached a deal to allow Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou to return home to China after three years detained in Canada, according to reports.

Ms Wanzhou, 49, the daughter of Huawei’s founder and chief executive Ren Zhengfei, has been fighting extradition to the US since 2018, when she was arrested at Vancouver International Airport and placed under 24/7 house arrest.

Known in China as the “princess of Huawei”, she was charged by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) with misleading HSBC bank in order to circumvent US sanctions against Iran, which she denies.

On Friday, however, both Reuters and the Wall Street Journal reported that the DoJ has agreed to resolve those charges, allowing her to leave Canada for the first time in three years.

The Canadian national broadcaster CBC reported that Ms Meng will plead guilty and pay a fine as part of a plea deal, citing inside sources.

Any such deal would help resolve a key front in the diplomatic and trade war between the US and China, which was started by former President Donald Trump but has continued under President Joe Biden.

US officials have long accused Huawei of using its global clout to spy on other countries for the Chinese government, with which it has a close relationship. Huawei strenuously denies that, claiming the US is cynically targeting it as a tool of foreign policy.

After Ms Meng’s arrest, China detained two Canadian citizens, businessman Michael Spavor and diplomat Michael Kovrig, who could now have a brighter chance of release.

The US has also been working to persuade allies to renounce Huawei’s highly affordable telecommunications technology, which appears in national phone and internet networks across the world.

Extradition hearings had concluded on 18 August, with a judge’s decision expected on 21 October.

The DoJ and Huawei did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

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