JOHN MCCallum, Canada’s Ambassador to China, has been fired by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau following his controversial remarks concerning the extradition request against Meng Wanzhou, an executive with Chinese telecom company Huawei.
McCallum had told Chinese-language journalists that he thought she had a strong case to fight the extradition and suggested several arguments in that regard. On Thursday, he said he had misspoken with those statements. Then the following day, he reportedly told a newspaper it would be “great for Canada” if the US dropped their extradition request.
Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer had demanded McCallum’s firing.
Trudeau said in a statement on Saturday: “Last night I asked for and accepted John McCallum’s resignation as Canada’s Ambassador to China.
“For almost two decades, John McCallum has served Canadians honourably and with distinction. He held many positions in Cabinet over the years, including Minister of National Defence, Minister of Veterans Affairs and, most recently, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship. His work as Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship in bringing in over 39,500 Syrian refugees remains an inspiration to Canadians and an example to the world. I thank him and his family for his service over the past many years.
“Effective immediately and in keeping with standard practice, Jim Nickel, the Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of Canada in Beijing, will represent Canada in China as Chargé d’affaires.”