Charges add to US-China tensions


The U.S., France, and other Western nations have voiced fear that using Huawei base stations and other gear could give Beijing access to critical network infrastructure worldwide, possibly allowing it to spy on foreign governments. If they don't reach an agreement by March 1, U.S. tariffs on US$200 billion ($292.4b) of Chinese products are set to rise from 10 per cent to 25 per cent.

John Ross, a senior fellow at Chongyang Institute, Renmin University of China, and an award-winning resident columnist with several Chinese media organizations, joined Radio Sputnik's Loud & Clear Tuesday to discuss the U.S. charges against the Chinese company.

The US believes that Huawei sought to destroy critical evidence when it deliberately relocated its employees out of the United States from where they could have served as critical witnesses against the company's actions.

FBI Director Christopher Wray told lawmakers the lines between "the Chinese government and ostensibly private companies" are blurred if not totally erased and "especially the lines between lawful behaviour and fair competition and lying and hacking and cheating and stealing".

The first indictment outlines efforts by Huawei to steal robotics technology used by rival T-Mobile in testing mobile phones. Huawei passed Apple in mid-2018 as the second-biggest global smartphone brand after Samsung. It has charged several Chinese hackers and intelligence officials.

China's foreign ministry urged the USA to drop the arrest warrant and end "unreasonable suppression" of Chinese companies.

Tensions were sparked by the arrest on December 1 of Huawei Technologies executive Meng Wanzhou following an extradition request from the United States.

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The extradition request came shortly after the United States had unsealed a 10-count indictment against the Chinese company and a 13-count indictment against Meng on Monday.

The Canadian Minister of Justice has 30 days from the receipt of the extradition order to decide if Meng will face extradition proceedings. McCallum called on the Canadian government to release Meng, suggesting Canada was caught in the middle of a superpower struggle.

The company further claimed that Huawei had only limited operations in Iran and that Huawei did not violate US or other laws or regulations related to Iran.

"The company denies that it or its subsidiary or affiliate have committed any of the asserted violations of U.S. law set forth in each of the indictments", a Huawei statement said.

"We stand strongly against any behaviour that violates laws and regulations", Ren said on January 16, touting a "very sound" compliance system and tough discipline for violators.

Meng is due in court Tuesday to discuss changes the court plans to make to the terms of her bail.

Earlier on Tuesday, Geng warned Washington in a statement to stop its campaign against Chinese enterprises, including Huawei. Speaking on Monday, the acting attorney general, Matthew Whitaker, said that indictment documents are being prepared against Huawei and its top officials.