Jennifer May named Canadian Ambassador to China

After nearly nine months without a diplomatic representative in China, Ottawa has appointed Jennifer May as ambassador to the Asian country, replacing Dominic Barton in this post.

Ms. May is not in her first post as a diplomat since she has been Canada’s ambassador to Brazil since 2019 and has previously worked in Canadian diplomatic missions in Europe, Latin America and Asia.

“A dedicated public servant, Ms. May has many years of varied experience in international missions,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a statement Friday. “This experience, along with his extensive knowledge of Asia, will enable him to manage this important bilateral relationship and promote Canada’s interests in China.”

It should be recalled that relations between Canada and China have not been good since the imprisonment of former Canadian diplomats Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, some time after the arrest in Vancouver of Meng Wanzhou, a Huawei executive, at the request of the United States.

The two Michaels had been released after more than 1,000 days of detention almost a year ago. Mr. Barton then announced his resignation on December 6, 2021, a few months after having contributed to their release.

“As Ambassador to China, Ms. May will lead the important work Canada is doing to uphold democratic values, human rights and the rule of law,” Ottawa said.

Canada has an embassy in Beijing and consulates general in Chongqing, Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Shanghai.

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