China’s Xi Jinping lectures Justin Trudeau at G20 over alleged leaks
Chinese leader Xi Jinping was captured by Canadian broadcasters in a rare candid moment on Wednesday, where he was filmed berating his Canadian counterpart, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, over what he described as “leaked” discussions.
On the sidelines of G20 meeting in Indonesia, Xi chats with Trudeau in Mandarin with a smile. But the English translation of what he said was a little less friendly.
“Everything we’ve discussed has been leaked to the newspapers, and that’s not appropriate,” Xi’s translator said.
Trudeau nodded and Xi spoke again. “And the conversation didn’t go like that,” said the translator.
“If there was sincerity on your part, then we will conduct our discussion in terms of mutual respect, otherwise there may be unpredictable consequences,” Xi told the Canadian leader in Mandarin.
Xi’s translator tries to translate what was said, only getting as far as “If there was sincerity on your part” before being cut off by Trudeau.
“In Canada, we believe in free, open and frank dialogue,” Trudeau said, adding that “we will continue to work constructively together, but there will be things on which we will disagree.”
“Let’s create the conditions first,” the interpreter said on behalf of Xi in the video. The Chinese leader then shook Trudeau’s hand and walked away with his entourage.
The exchange offers a rare glimpse into how Xi, whose public appearances are highly choreographedinteracts with other leaders.
Their exchange comes as Xi seeks to assert China’s global influence at a summit on the island of Bali after a nearly three-year absence from the world stage.
China’s relations with US allies have worsened to varying degrees in recent years, due to rising geopolitical tensions, disputes over trade and the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as Beijing’s growing partnership with Moscow – despite Russia’s war against Ukraine.
Xi tried to repair relations at the summit, meeting US President Joe Biden on Monday. He also held official talks with the leaders of Australia, France, the Netherlands, South Africa, Spain, Senegal, Argentina, Indonesia and South Korea.
Canada he was not granted such a meeting, and the snub may be related to strained relations between the countries since Huawei senior executive Meng Wanzhou was detained in Canada in 2018. Two Canadians were detained nine days later in China. All three were released in 2021
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