Huawei claims driven by politics not evidence, ITU chief says

Houlin Zhao said he had not seen anything to substantiate claims by the US and allies about Huawei

Zhao wants Huawei to be given equal opportunities to bid for business and only charge them when there's evidence of wrongdoing.
Zhao wants Huawei to be given equal opportunities to bid for business and only charge them when there's evidence of wrongdoing.

A U.S. campaign to ban the use of Huawei equipment in the country and elsewhere on security grounds appear to be driven by politics and trade, the head of the U.N. internet and telecoms agency ITU said on Friday.

The United States has banned Huawei equipment from its home market while urging allies to prohibit the company from building 5G networks, saying it could be used for espionage. Huawei has vehemently denied the allegations.

Houlin Zhao, secretary-general of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), told reporters in Geneva that security of 5G networks was in everybody’s interest but so far he had not seen anything to substantiate claims about Huawei.

“Those preoccupations with Huawei’s equipment, up to now there is no proof so far,” Zhao said, quoted by Reuters.

 “I would encourage Huawei to be given equal opportunities to bid for business, and during the operational process, if you find anything wrong, then you can charge them and accuse them. But if we don’t have anything then to put them on the blacklist – I think this is not fair,” the Chinese-born Zhao said.

The ITU will hold a meeting in October to finalise standards for the 5G spectrum. The ITU also has a study group of national experts looking into security.

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