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UK-US relations ‘not at risk’ over Huawei decision

EPA-EFE/JAKUB GAVLAK
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks at a media conference after his meeting with the Slovakian Minister of Foreign Affairs in Bratislava, Slovakia, 12 February 2019. Pompeo is on an official visit to Slovakia.

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United States’ secretary of state Mike Pompeo said that the relationship between the US and the United Kingdom “is not at risk” over UK’s decision to give China’s Huawei a role in its 5G network, and added that that the UK remains “a partner and a friend”.
“It is powerful to know that I have a colleague across the table or across the ocean to whom I can say, ‘Here’s how America sees this, let’s work together to solve this'”, Pompeo said during a meeting with the UK foreign secretary Dominic Raab in London.
“Our relationship is not at risk by having gone to our partner and said, ‘Hey, would you guys think about X, Y or Z’, or one of the hundreds of issues where two nations interact and work together”, he added.
Despite the US efforts to push for a Huawei ban, the UK recently decided to let the tech giant play a limited role in its 5G mobile phone networks. London said it will keep high risk vendors out of the most sensitive core parts of the networks, but will allow the company to supply other gear that is critical to the roll-out of 5G, such as antennas and base stations.
“The decision was made on Tuesday. I’m confident we can work together to implement that decision and work to get this right”, Pompeo said, adding that the US “will make sure that when American information passes across the network we are confident that the network is a trusted one”.
In May, the US government added Huawei to its trade blacklist, amid concerns that its 5G equipment enables the Chinese government to spy on other nations. Huawei has rejected the allegations, saying it operates independently of the ruling party of China.
“We will never permit American national security information to go across a network that we don’t have trust and confidence in. That’s the standard, whether it is a Microsoft system, it is the same whether it is a Ericsson, Nokia system, that’s the standard if it is a Chinese system”, Pompeo concluded.

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