Huawei’s chief legal officer has released an extraordinary statement accusing US politicians of attempting to put his company out of business. The strongly worded rebuke argues that the attack is unconstitutional - and warns that other industries could soon end up on Trump's "Entity List".
Dr. Song Liuping, Huawei’s chief legal officer, held a press conference in Shenzhen today in response to President Trump's executive order banning US telecommunications firms from using Huawei equipment.
It's safe to say that the executive didn't mince words.
"[The US] want to put us out of business. This is not normal," Liuping said.
"The fact is, the US government has provided no evidence to show that Huawei is a security threat. There is no gun, no smoke. Only speculation...This is 'trial by legislature,' and it is prohibited by the US Constitution."
Liuping went on to detail a motion for a summary judgment that has just been filed by Huawei in the US. The company is seeking to have the restrictions lifted on the basis that it has been given no opportunity to defend itself or provide evidence.
Liuping punched out with the following warning:
"Today it's telecoms and Huawei. Tomorrow it could be your industry, your company, your consumers."
Yikes. Here's the Huawei statement in full.
Last week, things started turning south for Huawei when Google announced that access to Android and the Play Store would be curtailed as a result of a trade ban imposed as part of a trade war between the United States of America and China. Google has been joined by a number of other tech companies. But while Google was a high profile loss, others are likely to be of far greater significance.
As you know, politicians in the US are using the strength of an entire nation to come after a private company.
They are using every tool they have, including legislative, administrative, and diplomatic channels. They want to put us out of business.
This is not normal. Almost never seen in history.
The fact is, the US government has provided no evidence to show that Huawei is a security threat. There is no gun, no smoke. Only speculation.
And yet Congress signed Section 889 of the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) into law – assuming guilt, not innocence.
This legislation provides Huawei with no opportunity to defend ourselves or provide evidence. It gives us no opportunity to present a rebuttal.
This is "trial by legislature," and it is prohibited by the US Constitution.
On March 6, Huawei filed a lawsuit in the US, asking the court to declare certain parts of Section 889 as unconstitutional.
Just now, we filed a motion for a summary judgment. By doing this, we hope that the court can:
- issue a judgment in the fastest and most efficient way
- declare restrictions on Huawei as unconstitutional
- and stop enforcement of related sections
Some people question why Huawei is fighting this law. They say it's a PR stunt.
Let me be clear: This lawsuit is about what's right. The NDAA is bad for Huawei. But it also takes away freedom of choice for American operators and consumers.
In the United States, many people in rural areas have been forgotten. They still don't have access to affordable broadband networks.
For many years, we have been working closely with rural operators to ensure that all Americans have equal access.
Despite these efforts, two weeks ago, the US Commerce Department added Huawei to their "Entity List."
This decision threatens to harm our customers in over 170 countries, including more than three billion consumers who use Huawei products and services around the world.
Connectivity is a basic human right, and the US government is putting their rights at risk. Especially people in underdeveloped countries, where there is a large digital divide.
In addition, by preventing American companies from doing business with Huawei, the government will directly harm more than 1,200 US companies. This will affect tens of thousands of American jobs.
It's unfortunate that the US government is using so much time, resources, and political capital to attack a private company.
We believe this sets a dangerous precedent.
Today it's telecoms and Huawei.
Tomorrow it could be your industry, your company, your consumers.
The judicial system is the last line of defense for justice. Huawei has confidence in the independence and integrity of the US judicial system. We hope that mistakes in the NDAA can be corrected by the court.
As always, ensuring cyber security is Huawei's top priority. We are doing everything we can to continue providing secure and advanced products with the support of our global suppliers and customers.
However, we believe that US politicians are using cyber security as an excuse to gain public support for actions that are designed to achieve other goals.
These actions will do nothing to make networks more secure. They provide a false sense of security, and distract attention from the real challenges we face.
Cyber security is a shared challenge.
If the US government’s real goal is security, we expect them to take the right approach and adopt honest and effective measures to enhance security for everyone.