0330 GMT October 22, 2021
Accusations against China tech giant Huawei's Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou have been "fabricated" and were aimed at suppressing the country's high-tech industries, state media said on Saturday, citing Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying.
After Meng was released and allowed to return to China from Canada following a U.S. extradition case, Hua described Meng's case as an "act of political persecution against Chinese citizens", the Communist Party newspaper People's Daily reported.
Chinese state media welcomed Meng Wanzhou back to the "motherland" on Saturday, after more than 1,000 days under house arrest in Canada, on what they called unfounded charges of bank fraud, Reuters reported.
Chinese state broadcaster CCTV carried a statement by the Huawei executive, written as her plane flew over the North Pole, avoiding U.S. airspace.
Her eyes were "blurring with tears" as she approached "the embrace of the great motherland", Meng said. "Without a strong motherland, I wouldn't have the freedom I have today."
Meng was arrested in December 2018 in Vancouver after a New York court issued an arrest warrant, claiming she tried to cover up attempts by Huawei-linked companies to sell equipment to Iran in breach of U.S. sanctions.
After nearly three years of legal wrangling, she was finally allowed to leave Canada and fly back to China on Friday, after securing a deal with U.S. prosecutors.
Canadians Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, detained by Chinese authorities just days after Meng's arrest, were released a few hours later, Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said.
Huawei, founded by Meng's father Ren Zhengfei, said in a statement that it "looked forward to seeing Ms. Meng returning home safely to be reunited with her family." It said it would continue to defend itself against U.S. charges.