The Honourable Andrew Scheer, Leader of Canada’s Conservatives and of the Official Opposition, issued this statement marking the one year anniversary of the detention of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor by the Chinese government:

“A year ago today two Canadians, Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, were arbitrarily and unlawfully detained by the Chinese government. While in prison, these two Canadians have been subject to near torturous conditions, including the confiscation of Mr. Kovrig’s reading glasses.

“During this time Justin Trudeau and his Liberal government have demonstrated gross incompetence and poor judgement on this important file.

“The appointment of former Liberal cabinet Minister and now disgraced ambassador to China, John McCallum, made the situation between the Chinese government and Canada even worse. Justin Trudeau then failed to appoint an ambassador to China for months, putting a freeze on relations between our two countries. And lastly, while two Canadians sit in a Chinese government prison, a Liberal Minister thought it was a good idea to travel to China to promote Canadian investment. 

“These actions show an unserious government unable to handle this important file. I will continue to call for Justin Trudeau to personally intervene on this vital issue and hold him accountable for the numerous mistakes he has made in the failed attempt to secure the release of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor.”