China's foreign ministry called in the U.S. ambassador on Sunday to lodge a "strong protest" over the arrest in Canada of Huawei Technologies Co Ltd's chief financial officer, and said the United States should withdraw its arrest warrant.
Meng Wanzhou, Huawei's global chief financial officer, was arrested in Canada on Dec. 1 and faces extradition to the United States, which alleges that she covered up her company's links to a firm that tried to sell equipment to Iran despite sanctions.
The executive is also the daughter of the founder of Huawei.
Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Le Yucheng told U.S. ambassador Terry Branstad that the United States had made an "unreasonable demand" on Canada to detain Meng while she was passing through Vancouver, China's Foreign Ministry said.
"The actions of the U.S. seriously violated the lawful and legitimate rights of the Chinese citizen, and by their nature were extremely nasty," Le told Branstad, comments similar to those he made to Canada's ambassador the night before.
China strongly urges the United States to pay attention to China's solemn and just position and withdraw the arrest warrant on Meng, Le added.
"China will respond further depending on U.S. actions," he said, without elaborating. Le also told the Canadian ambassador on Saturday that there would be severe consequences if it did not immediately release Meng.