Trump aide: US knew in advance of Chinese executive's arrest

National security adviser John Bolton said Thursday he knew in advance about the arrest of a top executive of Chinese telecom giant Huawei, an incident that could reignite the trade dispute between the U.S. and China.
 
"I knew in advance. This is something that we get from the Justice Department. And these kinds of things happen with some frequency," Bolton said in an interview with NPR.
 
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The top security aide said he did not know whether President TrumpDonald John TrumpCorsi sues Mueller for alleged leaks and illegal surveillance Comey: Trump 'certainly close' to being unindicted co-conspirator Trump pushes back on reports that Ayers was first pick for chief of staff MORE knew in advance of Meng Wanzhou's impending arrest Saturday by authorities in Canada, but a White House spokesman later told The Hill that Trump did not have advance knowledge.

Meng is reportedly suspected of violating U.S. trade sanctions on Iran.

The arrest occurred on the same day Trump reached a trade truce with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Group of 20 (G-20) summit in Argentina, but news that Meng was taken into custody did not break until Wednesday.

NPR later clarified that Bolton did not say specifically that he knew of the arrest during the dinner meeting with Xi.
 
China has demanded the release of Meng, the chief financial officer and daughter of the founder of Huawei, the world's largest supplier of telecom equipment. She faces potential extradition to the U.S. 
 
The company has become the target of some U.S. agencies over concerns it is too close to the Chinese government and is involved in activities like forced technology transfers and intellectual property theft.
 
"So not respecting this particular arrest, but Huawei is one company we've been concerned about. There are others as well. I think this is going to be a major subject of the negotiations that President Trump and President Xi Jinping agreed to in Buenos Aires," Bolton said Thursday.
 
Stock markets dropped on Thursday amid growing doubts about the strength of the truce between Trump and Xi. Before Meng's arrest, investors were spooked by Trump's threat that he is a "Tariff Man" and discrepancies between Washington and Beijing about what was agreed to at the summit.