A second Canadian has been detained by Chinese authorities just days after Canada’s former diplomat Michael Kovrig was taken into custody. Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland confirmed Wednesday that a second citizen had contacted the government after being dragged in for questioning. The Globe & Mail identified that individual as Michael Spavor, who reportedly runs a company that “brings tourists and hockey players into North Korea.” Chinese state media confirmed Thursday that Spavor was being held on suspicions of having harmed national security. His detention comes after Kovrig—a former diplomat working as an analyst at the International Crisis Group—was picked up in Beijing by the Chinese state security apparatus, the think tank said in a statement. Two people cited by the Globe & Mail said Spavor and Kovrig knew one another, though no further details were available on their connection. Their disappearances come after Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou was arrested last week by Canadian authorities at the request of the U.S.. The U.S. government alleged that Meng had helped facilitate violations of Iran sanctions. Meng was released on bail this week but ordered to wear an electronic ankle bracelet and remain under 24-hour surveillance. President Trump said he might “intervene” in the matter if his Beijing trade talks make progress.
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