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Watch: Xi rips into Trudeau

(Getty Images)

Justin Trudeau might be the self-anointed king of elite liberal opinion but it appears his methods find little favour with Beijing. Cringeworthy footage has now been released of President Xi Jinping dressing down the Canadian premier on the side-lines of the G20 conference.

The two leaders were caught on camera having an, er, lively discussion at the global summit in Bali today, with Xi tearing into the Prime Minister. A visibly irritated Xi confronted Trudeau about how details of an earlier meeting between them, which was held yesterday, had been leaked to the press by Canadian government sources.

The media reported that Trudeau had raised ‘serious concerns’ over suspected domestic interference by China during his first talks with Xi in more than three years. With a fixed grin on his features, Xi told him: ‘Everything that we discussed yesterday has been leaked to the papers and that’s not appropriate’ adding ‘that’s not the way the conversation was conducted.’

The hapless Trudeau could only reply: ‘Well in Canada, we believe in free and open and frank dialogue, which we will continue to have. We will continue to look to work constructively together but there will be things that we will disagree on.’ Xi then smiled pointedly and drew the exchange to a close. Ouch.

Looks like Trudeau forgot the first rule of leaking: never get caught in the act. And don’t do it in meetings with leaders of the Chinese Communist party, who have a rather less tolerant approach to freedom of the press then the leaders of the West…

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Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to or message @MrSteerpike

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