On Sunday, Meng Wanzhou, the CFO of China-based Huawei, published an open letter on the tech giant’s website. The letter comes on the first anniversary of her arrest and details her experiences as well as how she’s spent her time over the past year.
“It was never my intention to be stuck here so long, but I suddenly find that a whole year has snuck by, and here I still am,” she writes. “The past year has witnessed moments of fear, pain, disappointment, torment, and struggle… I have also learned to face up to and accept my situation. I’m no longer afraid of the unknown.”
Wanzhou says that she’s spent her time reading books, discussing minutiae with colleagues, and oil painting. She also thanks the company’s customers, suppliers, and netizens that have supported her during this time.
“I was told by my colleagues that take-out delivery workers left encouraging comments like ‘Go Huawei!’ and ‘You can do it, Huawei!’ on orders delivered to our campuses,” Wanzhou writes. “Netizens have gone out of their way to express their ongoing trust, support, and care for us as well.”
Her letter also says that she’s been “deeply moved by the kindness of people here in Canada,” including the public gallery during her hearings and her hired security company.
“Thanks to the kindness of the correctional officers and other inmates at the Alouette Correctional Center for Women, I was able to make it through the worst days of my life,” she says. “After a whole night of heavy snow, the security company’s staff were so considerate that they shovelled a path for my elderly mother.”
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Wanzhou was arrested on December 1 while transferring flights at the YVR Vancouver International Airport. Reports say that the United States claimed that Wanzhou “covered” up violations of sanctions on Iran and sought her extradition.
It was also believed that said violations helped Huawei “circumvent US sanctions by telling financial institutions that a Huawei subsidiary was a separate company.”
Following her arrest, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Geng Shuang responded by demanding clarification regarding the reason for her arrest — as well as her immediate release.
Wanzhou, the daughter of Huawei’s founder, Ren Zhengfei, denied any wrongdoing in connection to the case. She also notes that she doesn’t “have a criminal record in China or anywhere, and has never had a problem with law enforcement in China or abroad.”
After several days of hearings, she was ultimately granted bail in BC Supreme Court for $10 million. Her conditions include residing at one of her two residences in Vancouver while being required to wear an electronic monitoring device on her ankle and surrendering her passports.
You can read Wanzhou’s full letter here.