China release detained Canadian women

Alberta teacher Sarah McIver returned to Canada after arrest in China

China holds zero tolerance towards and will strive to fight against anyone - be it foreigner or Chinese - who is involved in drug-related activities, Chinese analysts warned after news reports that a Canadian will go to trial in Northeast China on Saturday for drug trafficking.

Authorities arrested the men separately after an executive from the telecom firm Huawei was detained on Canadian soil.

The high court in Liaoning, which heard Robert Lloyd Schellenberg's appeal Saturday, said in a statement that a previous ruling in November, which sentenced him to 15 years in jail and a 150,000 yuan (USD 21,800) forfeiture, was "obviously inappropriate" given the severity of his crimes.

Tensions between the two governments have been escalating since Canada's arrest of a high-ranking Chinese executive at the request of the United States this month, followed by China's detention of two Canadian citizens on suspicion of endangering state security.

The Higher People's Court of the northeastern province of Liaoning says evidence showed it was possible Schellenberg played an "important role" as it ordered the court in the city of Dalian to try the case again.

Drugs offences are routinely punished severely in China. It added that Canadian diplomats were in court for the appeal.

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When McIver arrived in China, the school she was supposed to teach at no longer had work for her, so Chinese authorities gave her a job somewhere else, according to Rhona.

Both China and Canada had said McIver's case differed from those of Kovrig and Spavor.

USA authorities claim Meng Wanzhou lied to US banks to get around sanctions against Iran asked to extradite the executive.

Canada's government has said it has been following the case for several years and providing consular assistance, but could provide no other details citing privacy concerns.

McIver, who was detained and sentenced to administrative punishment for illegal employment, was teaching English at a school somewhere in China (the exact region she was working in has not been made public).

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