As directors of policy institutions in Berlin, we express our deep concern and request information concerning the whereabouts and well-being of the three Canadian citizens, including Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, who have been detained in China since last week. We urge for allegations against them to be clarified by the relevant Chinese authorities and expect objective and fair treatment in line with international standards.

Developments such as these increase uncertainty and distrust among foreign scholars who regularly conduct research within China, as they fear for their safety. This will clearly undermine efforts to better understand developments in China and to further constructive relations between China and other countries.

Thorsten Benner, Director, Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi), Berlin

Thomas Kleine-Brockhoff, Vice President and Director, German Marshall Fund (GMF), Berlin

Mark Leonard, Director, European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR), Berlin

Prof. Dr. Volker Perthes, Executive Chairman and Director, Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP), German Institute for International and Security Affairs

Prof. Dr. Frank N. Pieke, Director and CEO, Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS), Berlin

Dr. Daniela Schwarzer, Director, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Auswärtige Politik (DGAP), Berlin

 

Media contact:

Kerstin Lohse-Friedrich, Director of Communications MERICS
kerstin.lohse@merics.de
+49 30 3440 999 10
+49 151 5115 9903

Johannes Heller, Trainee Communications MERICS
johannes.heller@merics.de
+49 30 3440 999 12