The White House confirmed that Chinese Communist Party leader Xi Jinping discussed Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou with President Joe Biden days before she was released on Friday.
“It should not come at no surprise that President Xi raised the Huawei official,” Psaki said. “But again there was no negation on this call.”
The call between Biden and Xi took place September 9 and lasted an hour and a half, according to Biden.
The Biden Justice Department dropped charges against Wanzhou, setting her free from house arrest in Vancouver. Wanzhou was arrested in Canada in 2018 during the Trump administration on charges she violated trade sanctions on Iran.
After Wanzhou was released on Friday, China released two Canadian detainees, Canadian citizens Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor.
Psaki also confirmed that Biden raised the cases of the “two Michaels” who were imprisoned in China during his conversation with Xi.
“He raised the two individuals, the two Michaels, who have been released,” she said.
She denied that Xi and Biden negotiated the two cases during the call.
“These two leaders raised the cases of these individuals but there was no negotiation about it,” she said.
China repeatedly denied that the arrest of the two Canadians was in response to Meng’s 2018 arrest.
Psaki also denied any connection.
“I think it’s important to note and to be very clear about this. There is no link,” she said. “We have an independent Justice Department.”