China-sanctioned Tory MP Kenny Chiu denounces disinformation campaign against him
Vancouver residents who support the Chinese Communist Party promote the Liberals in Canada’s general election for the 44th Parliament on September 20.
Additionally, Richmond Conservative MP Kenny Chiu – who was sanctioned by China in March – said there was a concerted effort to spread disinformation about him.
“I kind of anticipated some backlash and attacks because of my relatively strong and clear stance on foreign interference and influence, and also for defending human rights and democracy around the world. But what I didn’t anticipate was some of the slander and level of lies that have been circulating in WeChat and even now appearing on WhatsApp, ”said Chiu, who, while in opposition for ever since. 2019, tabled a bill (C-282) to establish a national register of foreigners exercising political activity. Chiu is also a staunch critic of human rights violations by the CCP and a supporter of the Hong Kong democratic movement.
Posts on WeChat (China’s state-controlled social media platform), reviewed and translated by Glacier Media, generally show support for liberals, criticism of conservatives, and indifference to neo-Americans. democrats. They invoke racial unity and support for the Chinese government.
“Please vote for the Liberals and use your power in the Chinese community so that we can have a chance to influence the future of Canada,” read a message.
Another message circulating is addressed to “overseas Chinese”.
It reads, in part: “As long as we ethnic Chinese don’t vote resolutely for these crazy sinophobic Conservative candidates and vote for the Liberal candidates in your ridings, we will surely defeat the Conservative Party.” “
The post makes no mention of domestic issues and focuses on relations / issues with China, including apologizing to Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for not being able to ‘say much’ about the detention of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou and explaining how under the Liberals the “door to 5G is not yet closed for Huawei” (unlike all of Canada’s national security allies who view Huawei hardware as a CCP-controlled cyber threat) .
The message praises the CCP’s “Chinese way to socialism” and states that if Canada can maintain friendly relations and trade with China, its economy will improve.
Another post falsely claims that Chiu’s Foreign Influence Register Bill would consider a person under the influence of the Chinese government for attending events organized by the Chinese Consul General or the CCP’s United Front Work Department, a large organization that aims to export Chinese nationalism to the Chinese people. who emigrated from China. On the contrary, the bill would register the representatives of foreign governments and the associated organizations known to the countries in a list established by the Canadian government (China would probably be included). The post claims that if China is targeted, then America should be too.
Hong Kong-born MP Steveston-Richmond East said he could not say whether the campaign against him was a case of foreign interference.
“I don’t know, I just think there are people hiding in the shadows for political purposes, to manipulate certain groups in our community,” Chiu said.
“The practice they employ has definitely improved and become much more sophisticated; you wouldn’t be able to find any hard evidence that points in the direction of the regime itself, ”said Chiu, who knows that many Chinese people fear social and economic reprisals for their families in China if they speak out against the government. diet here in Canada.
Meanwhile, the Chinese Benevolent Association (CBA), which also supports the Chinese regime, recently hosted a lunch for Liberal Josh Vander Vies, the candidate from East Vancouver, which includes Chinatown.
One of the association’s last major public events before the pandemic was held in September 2019 to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China by the CCP. In addition, in the past two years, the association has bought ads in Chinese newspapers denouncing the House of Commons vote declaring that China is committing genocide against Uyghur Muslims in the Xinjiang Autonomous Region (East Turkistan). . He also published announcements in support of Beijing’s national security law imposed on Hong Kong, which criminalizes dissent against the Communist regime and has led to the imprisonment of dozens of politicians, journalists and students. democrats.
However, association president Fred Kwok told Glacier Media that he organized lunch at the Floata restaurant for around 100 people because the Vander Vies campaign contacted him.
Kwok explained that his promotion of Vander Vies was not intended to be partisan.
Kwok’s WeChat invitation states, in part, “The Chinese people must show their voting power in this election. Now that this Liberal candidate is running for the first time in Van East, we, the Chinese people, must show the voting power to politicians. The South Asian people already have a huge influence. The Chinese should also show solidarity.
“When the future victory comes, there will be at least a few more deputies who care about the Chinese people’s problems.”
Kwok explained that he wanted to involve the local Chinese community. He said a key issue in his constituency was the loss of Chinatown businesses and racist incidents against the Chinese.
When asked to explain why his association is otherwise so concerned with China’s internal affairs, and particularly those which are controversial against the CCP, Kwok said the concern stems from the feeling that he and d Others have said that criticizing the Chinese government is tantamount to criticizing the Chinese people and therefore racist incidents against them.
Ivy Li of the Sino-Canadian Group Concerned on the Violation of Human Rights by the Communist Party of China opposes the association linking Chinese government affairs to the entire “Chinese community” and says the lunches free vouchers border on the “vote buy” tactic.
“Judging by all of the CBA’s previous statements, these issues would most likely be in Beijing’s best interest, not Canada’s. Therefore, the “Chinese people” he mentions cannot refer to Chinese Canadians, nor would it be in the best interests of Chinese Canadians. “
Li specifically argues that linking racist incidents to criticism of the CCP is meant to quell criticism of the regime as part of a larger effort to make Canada economically enslaved to China through political policies that favor China, for example by importing telecommunications equipment and cornering markets in resource extraction, or ignoring some of its dangers, such as the arbitrary detention of Canadian citizens, theft of intellectual property and trade measures retaliation.
The Conservatives have taken a much more critical approach to China in this election campaign. The conservatives, unlike the liberals, promise, among many commitments, to ban Huawei from 5G networks, to impose Magnitsky sanctions on human rights violators, to advise universities against partnerships with Chinese companies controlled by state and ban senior officials for five years after their departure. employment office or contracts with the Chinese government or an entity controlled by the Chinese government.
Conservatives differentiate criticism of the Chinese government and the Chinese people in their platform: “We must stand up to the Chinese Communist government. Our quarrel is not with the Chinese people.
“We stand in particular in solidarity with Canadians of Chinese descent whose contributions to Canada are immeasurable and who are experiencing an appalling increase in anti-Asian hatred and discrimination. And we stand alongside Uyghur Muslims, Tibetans, Falun Gong practitioners, Hong Kongers and Chinese Christians.
Meanwhile, the liberal platform is silent on issues surrounding China.
While foreign affairs have so far taken a step back in these snap elections, according to a Nanos poll released on Wednesday, nearly two-thirds (63%) of Canadians polled want the next federal government to be “more forceful towards China “.
The poll (commissioned by Canada-Hong Kong Link, Saskatchewan Stands with Hong Kong, Vancouver Society in Support of Democratic Movement and Vancouver Hong Kong Forum Society) states:
- 88% support a foreign influence registry;
- 80% support a ban on Huawei;
- 80% say China has done a poor or very poor job of being transparent about the initial outbreak of the COVID-19 virus in China; and
- 62% support or somewhat support a boycott of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.
According to an Angus Reid poll last March, only 14% of Canadians have a favorable opinion of China, up from 58% in 2005 and 43% in 2013, when Xi Jinping became president.