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President Trump says he's willing to intervene in the case of Huawei CFO if it helps trade deal with China


Chinese executive Meng Wanzhou was released on bail Tuesday, after being detained in Canada since Dec. 1

Rich Lam/Getty Images

President Donald Trump says he is willing to intervene in the U.S. government's case against Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou if such a move would help in securing a trade deal with China.

What are the details?

Meng was released on $7.4 million bail on Tuesday, after being detained in Vancouver since Dec. 1. The Chinese executive was arrested by Canadian law enforcement at the behest of U.S. authorities who accused her of fraudulently leading banks to possibly compromise American sanctions against Iran.

If found guilty, Meng, 46, could be sentenced to 30 years in prison for each fraud and conspiracy charge she faces.

Responding to a question about whether or not he would be willing to intervene in Meng's case, Trump told Reuters, "Whatever's good for this country, I will do.

"If I think it's good for what will be certainly the largest trade deal ever made — which is a very important thing — what's good for national security — I would certainly intervene if I thought it was necessary," the president added.

The Daily Mail reported that Trump's comments were likely intended to placate Chinese officials who have expressed anger over Meng's arrest and detainment.

Anything else?

U.S. and Canadian relationships with China were already delicate prior to Meng's arrest, with both North American countries in the midst of trade negotiations with the communist state.

On Tuesday, Beijing detained a Canadian ex-diplomat in what is considered by some experts to be a retaliatory move over Meng being held in Vancouver. Two unnamed sources told Reuters on Tuesday that the U.S. State Department is now mulling over whether or not to issue a travel warning for Americans citizens visiting China in any capacity.

The Chinese government confirmed Wednesday that it is holding Canadian Michael Kovrig on suspicion of "carrying out activities that harm the Chinese national security."

According to White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow, President Trump was unaware of Meng's arrest when he dined with Chinese President Xi Jinping the same day the executive was apprehended while she was attempting to switch flights in Canada. Trump reportedly reacted with "intense anger" after learning of the ordeal later in the evening.

Responding to a question on Tuesday as to whether or not he had spoken with President Xi about the situation with Meng, President Trump said, "They have not called me yet. They are talking to my people. But they have not called me yet."

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