Canadian authorities have arrested the chief financial officer of China’s Huawei Technologies for possible extradition to the United States.
Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Vancouver, British Columbia, on Saturday, Justice Department spokesman Ian McLeod said.
Mr McLeod said a publication ban had been imposed in the case and he could not provide further details.
The ban was sought by Meng, who has a bail hearing on Friday, he said.
The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this year that US authorities are investigating whether Chinese tech giant Huawei violated sanctions on Iran.
Meng is also deputy chairman of the board and the daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei.
Huawei issued a statement saying Meng was changing flights in Canada when she was detained “on behalf of the United States of America” to face “unspecified charges” in New York.
“The company has been provided very little information regarding the charges and is not aware of any wrongdoing by Ms Meng,” the statement said.
Huawei said it complies with all laws and rules where it operates, including export controls and sanctions of the United Nations, the US and European Union.
The Chinese Embassy in Ottawa said her human rights were violated and demanded her immediate release.
“At the request of the US side, the Canadian side arrested a Chinese citizen not violating any American or Canadian law. The Chinese side firmly opposes and strongly protests over such kind of actions which seriously harmed the human rights of the victim,” the statement said.
A US Justice Department spokesman declined to comment.
In April, China appealed to Washington to avoid damaging business confidence following the Wall Street Journal report that US authorities were investigating whether Huawei violated sanctions on Iran amid spiralling technology tensions.
A foreign ministry spokeswoman, Hua Chunying, said then that China opposes any country imposing unilateral sanctions based on its own law.
Asked about the report that Huawei was under investigation, Ms Hua said in April, “We hope the US will refrain from taking actions that could further undermine investor confidence in the US business environment and harm its domestic economy and normal, open, transparent and win-win international trade.”
That same month Washington barred Huawei rival ZTE Corp from exporting US technology in a separate case over exports to Iran and North Korea.