Thursday August 07, 2014

Canadian couple accused of spying in China

Listen 21:58

Two Canadians are being held in China on suspicion of stealing state secrets. As the owners of a popular cafe, they seem unlikely spies. But the location of the business -- near the North Korea border -- may have entangled the Garatts in the strange relationship between China and its neighbour.

"It doesn't make sense why this would just come up all of a sudden....they've been who they are for the 30 years they've been in China, and they've never had a problem before. "

Peter Garratt, the son of Kevin and Julia Dawn Garratt

Kevin and Julia Dawn Garratt were detained on Monday. Just last week, Canada was making similair allegations about China, blaming Beijing for a highly sophisticated cyber attack on the National Research Council.

To find out more about their situation, we were joined by three guests:

- Peter Garratt is the son of Kevin and Julia Dawn Garratt. He spoke to us from Dandong, China.

- Hazel Smith is the Director of the International Institute of Korean Studies at the University of Central Lancashire.

- Carsten Vala is a Loyola University professor of political science in Baltimore, Maryland.

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This segment was produced by The Current's Catherine Kalbfleisch and Leif Zapf-Gilje.