Beijing: China on Wednesday stated that it was ‘absolutely not worried’ about foreign countries’ reactions on the announcement of the death penalty for the Canadian man convicted under drug trafficking charges on January 14.
Sputnik quoted Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying while addressing the media, “I can clearly say that we are absolutely not worried [about the international criticism]”.
“I think that Canada has a few allies on the issue and they absolutely cannot represent the opinion of the entire international community. It seems to me that the international community has reached a consensus that such dangerous crimes as illegal drug trafficking must be strictly punished,” Hua added.
The statements from the Chinese ministry came after the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s criticism stated that the accused, identified as Robert Lloyd Schellenberg, wanted to deliver drugs to Australia.
The Foreign ministry official added that China would never allow drug traffickers from any country to endanger the lives and health of its citizens by smuggling narcotic substances within its borders.
“If the fact that Schellenberg was sentenced to death for [attempting to smuggle] 222 kilograms [489 pounds] of drugs is inhuman and inappropriate. Is it humane and appropriate to allow even more people to die from these drugs?. Chinese people still remember the danger of drugs in the wake of 1840 [the beginning of the First Opium War between China and the British Empire], and China will not allow drug dealers from any country to harm the health and life of Chinese people again,” Hua said at the briefing.
“If Schellenberg smuggled drugs to Canada, then China would not care how Canada deals with such cases, but the incident occurred in China, and therefore the case should be resolved in accordance with Chinese laws,” she noted.
The Dalian Intermediate People’s Court in China announced death sentence for Schellenberg who was earlier convicted under charges of drug trafficking and had already served 15 years of imprisonment.
The Chinese government, this year, invited the 70 observers including a small group of foreign journalists to attend his hearing in the appeals court.
After showing “extreme concern” over the issue, the Canadian Prime Minister accused China of “arbitrarily” applying the death sentence against Schellenberg and asked “all countries around the world” to be aware of China’s manner of conduct.
The sentence comes amid the escalation of China’s diplomatic row with the United States and Canada after Huawei’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Sabrina Meng Wanzhouwas arrested last month in Vancouver at the request of the United States.