Huawei’s Meng Wanzhou: ‘I paint and read’ in Canadian detention

Dec. 2 (UPI) — Huawei’s chief financial officer is spending her time in Canadian detention reading books “cover to cover” and “carefully completing oil paintings,” according to a statement published to the Chinese tech firm’s website this week.

Meng Wanzhou, who was arrested on Dec. 1, 2018, in Vancouver at the request of the United States, said in her statement published Sunday night that her one-year detention has slowed the passage of time.

“When I was in Shenzhen, time used to pass by very quickly. Every day, my schedule was fully packed and I was constantly rushing from place to place, and from meeting to meeting,” Meng said in her statement.

“Right now, time seems to pass slowly. It is so slow that I have enough time to read a book from cover to cover. I can take the time to discuss minutiae with my colleagues or to carefully complete an oil painting.”

Meng, who is the daughter of Huawei founder Ren Zengfei, also credited her supporters and Canadian officers for a relatively comfortable detention in Vancouver, where she can travel freely in the city as along as she keeps on an electronic tag and abides by a 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew.

“In these dark moments, our customers and suppliers have chosen to trust us, support us and wait. This motivates us to work even harder,” Meng said. “I’ve also been deeply moved by the kindness of people here in Canada.”

Meng is fighting extradition to the United States, where she is wanted for alleged violations of sanctions against Iran.

China arrested two Canadians in 2018 following Meng’s arrest in Canada.

Michael Spavor, a Canadian citizen who has met with Kim Jong Un and has business ties to North Korea, and Michael Kovrig, a former Canadian diplomat with the International Crisis Group, remain in Chinese prison.

The BBC reported Monday Chinese guards might have confiscated Kovrig’s reading glasses in July.

Simon Rabinovitch, a journalist with The Economist, said this week on Twitter Spavor could be “in a cold prison cell in Dandong with 18 detainees, sharing one open toilet.”

“But I hear he’s getting on OK because he’s good at cutting hair for the others,” Rabinovitch tweeted.