President Joe Biden followed his bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Tuesday with calls for the release of Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, two Canadian citizens imprisoned in China.
Biden said during a virtual address after the meeting by claiming that he and Trudeau will be “coordinating our approaches to better compete with China and to counter threats to our interests and values” and called on China to release the two detainees.
“Human beings are not bargaining chips,” he stated. “We are going to work together until we get their safe return. Canada and the United States will stand together against abuse of universal rights and Democratic freedoms.”
Later in his remarks, the president proclaimed that “the United States has no closer and no more important friend than Canada” and vowed to work together to combat the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and racial injustice. (RELATED: White House Ramps Up Calls For ‘Robust, International’ Probe Of COVID Origins, With Full Access To China’s Data)
Trudeau, speaking in both English and French, called Biden’s remarks a “roadmap” toward a “new” North American partnership.