China calls US charges against Huawei ‘unjustified repression’

Beijing (IANS): China on Tuesday alleged that the US was subjecting Chinese companies to “unjustified repression” in response to Washington’s criminal charges against Huawei, accusing the tech giant of banking fraud, stealing trade secrets and evade economic sanctions on Iran.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Geng Shuang in a statement said China was very “concerned” about the criminal complaint filed by the US Department of Justice against Huawei and its Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou who was arrested and later released on bail in Canada, reports Efe news.

Geng said Beijing had constantly required Chinese companies to carry out their economic activities abroad in compliance with the local laws.

Geng said the US had been using public offices to discredit and punish Chinese companies in an attempt to strangle their legitimate operations.

He said there had been “powerful” efforts and political manipulations behind such tactics, and urged the US to end its “unjustified repression” of Chinese companies.

The statement said China would “determinedly” defend the “legitimate” rights and interests of Chinese companies abroad.

A pair of indictments, which were partly unsealed on Monday, come amid a broad and aggressive campaign by the US to try to thwart China’s biggest telecom equipment maker.

One indictment accuses Huawei trying for years to steal T-Mobile’s proprietary phone testing technology while another one against Meng claims that Huawei defrauded four large banks into clearing transactions with Iran in violation of international sanctions through a subsidiary called Skycom.

But the most serious new allegation in the indictment, which could have a bearing on Meng’s extradition proceeding, is the contention by federal prosecutors that Huawei sought to impede the investigation into the telecom company’s attempt to evade economic sanctions on Iran by destroying or concealing evidence.

The indictments come amid a diplomatic crisis between Washington and Beijing as the representatives of the two sides are set to meet later this week to discuss the resolution of the bilateral trade war.

Huawei is yet to comment on the charges.

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