Chinese President Xi Jinping criticized his Canadian counterpart, Justin Trudeau, on Wednesday for "leaking" details of a conversation between the two leaders.
"Everything we discuss has been leaked to the paper, that's not appropriate," Xi complained to Trudeau by way of a translator at the G20 summit in Indonesia. He was referring to a 10-minute conversation the pair had Tuesday.
But Trudeau interrupted to tell Xi in Canada, such details are not hidden.
“We believe in free and open and frank dialogue and that is what we will continue to have," Trudeau told Xi through the interpreter. "We will continue to look to work constructively together but there will be things we will disagree on.”
Specifics of what the pair discussed during their encounter are not known. But Canada's CTV News reported that North Korean missile launches, human rights, the Russia/Ukraine situation, climate change and China's meddling in Canadian affairs were mentioned.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police charged Yuesheng Wang, a researcher and employee of the government-owned energy company, Hydro-Quebec, with espionage this week.
When Trudeau and Xi finished their talk Wednesday, they parted with a handshake.
Trudeau was asked by reporters if he gave any guarantees to Xi that future conversations between the two would be kept private. The prime minister said Canadians should be "apprised of what it is we're doing and the conversations we're having here."
"Canada trusts its citizens with information about the conversations that we have in their name, as a government," said Trudeau. "I think it's important that Canadians in a democracy, that citizens in a democracy, be apprised of the work that leaders are doing on their behalf. And I won't shy away from being open with Canadians, even as we discuss important and sometimes delicate subjects."
Source: Anadolu Agency