Jennifer May becomes first female Canadian ambassador to China

Jennifer May becomes first female Canadian ambassador to China

2022-09-26 0 By Huawei     GOOGLE NEWS    

OTTAWA, September 23 (Reuters) – Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed Jennifer May as the first female ambassador to China on Friday, taking over a post that has been open since December last year amid ongoing diplomatic tensions with Asia’s economic giant. told.

Trudeau said in a statement that May is a senior diplomat with 30 years of experience. She most recently served as Canada’s ambassador to Brazil and has worked in Canadian missions in Beijing and Hong Kong throughout her career.

“Ms. May will lead Canada’s important work in standing up for democratic values, human rights and the rule of law,” Trudeau said. said. “His work will be key to advancing Canadian priorities in the Canada-China relationship.”

In 2019, Canada appointed another career diplomat, Kirsten Hillman, as its first female ambassador to the United States.

Jennifer May, the new Canadian ambassador to China, is shown in a handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Global Affairs Canada

On Thursday, Secretary of State Melanie Joly told diplomats meeting in New York that she will “soon” lay out a new Indo-Pacific strategy aimed at engaging with China on trade and climate change, competing with and confronting it in other areas such as critical minerals. on human rights issues.

Recently, a planned trip by Canadian lawmakers to Taiwan and the passage of a Canadian frigate through the Taiwan Strait has unsettled Beijing, but tensions between Canada and China have been high for years.

In May, Ottawa banned the use of 5G hardware from China’s Huawei Technologies Co due to national security concerns. Huawei delayed its decision in 2019 as Trudeau was reluctant to take action until the fate of Canadians detained in China on espionage charges was clear.

After Canada arrested Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou in 2018, Beijing arrested two Canadians on espionage charges. The standoff ended in September 2021, with all three released after US prosecutors reached a settlement with Meng.

Canada also has a very large Chinese immigrant community. More than 1.8 million Canadians are of Chinese descent, and Chinese is the second most spoken language in Canada after English and French. (Reporting by Steve Scherer; Editing by Jan Harvey)

Source: Reuters