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Trudeau calls on US, China to discuss two detained Canadians

Trudeau calls on US, China to discuss two detained Canadians
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Canadian Prime Minister called for the U.S. and China to discuss two Canadians detained in China as high-ranking officials from Washington and Beijing meet in Alaska Friday. 

Trudeau in a press conference panned the “arbitrary” detentions of Michael Spavor, who was tried Thursday without the presence of any Canadian officials, and Michael Kovrig, who will be tried Monday. Both were arrested just days after Huawei senior executive Meng Wanzhou was detained in Canada on a U.S. extradition warrant.

The two were charged with espionage and face potential life sentences.

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"Let me be very clear: Their arbitrary detention is completely unacceptable, as is the lack of transparency around these court proceedings," Trudeau said. 

"I am very confident that this is an issue that will be raised at that summit."

Trudeau has already brought up the detentions of Spavor and Kovrig with President BidenJoe BidenBiden says Beau's assessment of first 100 days would be 'Be who you are' Biden: McCarthy's support of Cheney ouster is 'above my pay grade' Conservative group sues over prioritization of women, minorities for restaurant aid MORE. The two leaders last month held a virtual bilateral meeting, during which Biden affirmed that “human beings are not bartering chips.”

“We stand shoulder-to-shoulder with Canada in calling for their immediate release and continue to condemn the lack of minimum procedural protections during their two-year arbitrary detention,” Katherine Brucker, the No. 2 official at the U.S. Embassy in Canada, said in a statement Thursday.

The Alaska summit kicked off Thursday, with Secretary of State Antony BlinkenAntony BlinkenOvernight Defense: Ex-Pentagon chief defends Capitol attack response as GOP downplays violence | Austin, Biden confer with Israeli counterparts amid conflict with Hamas | Lawmakers press Pentagon officials on visas for Afghan partners Biden speaks with Israel's Netanyahu amid spiraling conflict with Hamas Blinken talks with Netanyahu amid escalating violence MORE and national security adviser Jake SullivanJake SullivanHouse lawmakers roll out bill to invest 0 million in state and local cybersecurity Blinken speaks with Israeli counterpart amid escalating conflict Biden sent letter to Palestinian president over 'current situations' MORE meeting their Chinese counterparts. The meeting had an acrimonious beginning, with China questioning the state of U.S. democracy and the country’s treatment of Black citizens.