What just happened? We know that the US doesn’t trust Huawei, and it doesn’t want its allies using the Chinese firm’s equipment in their 5G networks. The American government has already threatened to cut intelligence ties with Germany if it ignores this advice, and it is now warning the UK and other western nations that they could face the same fate.
Back in November last year, months after US government agencies and contractors had been banned from using certain tech from Huawei and other Chinese companies, the US reportedly advised allied countries not to use Huawei’s 5G equipment. Any that disagreed could see their intelligence sharing with the US limited.
The UK is one country that doesn’t see Huawei in the same light as America. The nation said it believes it can manage the risks from using the firm's equipment, and a recent leak revealed it was ready for Huawei to provide it with “non-core” infrastructure—something the US says will not protect it from security risks.
As reported by The Guardian, Robert Strayer, a deputy assistant secretary at the US Department of State, said that the US “will have to reassess our ability to share be interconnected and share information” if Huawei is deployed by the UK or other western countries. With the statement coming so soon after the leak, it’s assumed to be directed at the United Kingdom.
Strayer said that nations using Huawei technology in their communications networks risk handing China “a loaded gun.” The US has long accused the firm of spying on behalf of China’s government without any concrete evidence, and a recent CIA report claims it is funded by the country’s state security.