Canada announced that it will ban Huawei from its 5G networks

FILE PHOTO: A smartphone with the Huawei and 5G network logo is seen on a PC motherboard in this illustration picture taken January 29, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo (DADO RUVIC/)

Wireless carriers in Canada will not be able to install Huawei equipment on their high-speed 5G networksthe Canadian government said on Thursday, joining allies in banning the giant Chinese tech company.

Canada had been the only member of the Five Eyes intelligence grouping alliance that did not ban or restrict the use of Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. equipment in its 5G networks. The United States and the other members (Britain, Australia and New Zealand) previously banned Huawei.

The measure was confirmed on Thursday by a spokesman for the Minister of Public Security, Marco Mendicino.

The US government has been pressuring allies like Canada for years to exclude Huawei from new ultra-fast 5G mobile networks over the concern that China‘s communist rulers may force the company to help with cyber espionage. The United States has warned that it would reconsider sharing intelligence with any country that uses Huawei equipment.

The company has repeatedly denied the allegations.

The development of 5G networks, or fifth generation, will give people faster online connections and it will provide vast data capacity to meet voracious demand as more and more things connect to the Internet and innovations such as virtual reality, immersive gaming and autonomous vehicles emerge.

FILE PHOTO: The Huawei logo is seen during the Mobile World Congress in Shanghai, China February 23, 2021. REUTERS/Aly Song
FILE PHOTO: The Huawei logo is seen during the Mobile World Congress in Shanghai, China, February 23, 2021. REUTERS/Aly Song (Aly Song/)

Huawei is the world’s largest provider of network equipment for telephone and Internet companies. It has been a symbol of China’s progress to become a global tech powerhouse, and an issue of concern in the US. Some analysts say Chinese companies have flouted international rules and regulations and stolen technology.

China, the US and Canada completed what was effectively a prisoner swap last year involving a senior Huawei executive who had been accused of fraud by the US.

China jailed two Canadians shortly after Canada arrested Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Huawei Technologies and daughter of the company’s founder, on an extradition request from the United States.. They were sent back to Canada in September, a few days after Meng returned to China after reaching a settlement with US authorities in his case.

Many countries called China’s action “hostage policy,” while China described the charges against Huawei and Meng as a politically motivated attempt to curb China’s economic and technological development.

According to a report from Brookings Institution titled China as a great cyber power: Beijing’s two voices in telecommunications, Beijing’s ambitions in telecommunications and information technology are part of a broader strategy that seeks to make the Asian country the dominant cyber power in this century.

Beijing believes that it is at a historic moment in which has the opportunity to set the new global standards in this sector.

Chinese President state visit – Day Two
Ren Zhengfei (right), president of Huawei Technologies, shows Chinese President Xi Jinping the company’s offices in London on the second day of his state visit (Photo by PA Images/Sipa USA) (Press Association/)

Just as it is more than well known regime persecution of Uyghursit was also made public that Huawei collaborated with Beijing to crack down using powerful software. The tech giant tested a software from facial recognition I could senduyghur alarms“automated to government authorities when their camera systems identify members of the oppressed minority group, according to an internal document, seen by The Washington Post, that provides more details about the China’s artificial intelligence surveillance regime.

An investigation by Washington Post of more than 100 Huawei PowerPoint presentations, many of them marked as “confidential”suggests that the company had a broader role in monitoring China’s population than has been acknowledged.

“These marketing presentations, posted on a public Huawei website before they were removed by the company late last year, show how its technologies can help government authorities identify people by voice, monitor political persons of interest, manage prisoner retraining and work schedules, and help retailers track shoppers using facial recognition”, reveals the journalistic report.

According to this investigation by journalist Eva Dou, and with the collaboration of journalist Pei Lin Wu in Taiwan, “the divergence between Huawei’s public denials that it does not know how customers use its technology and detailed accounts of operations of surveillance on slides bearing the company’s watermark, taps into long-standing concerns about the fhigh level of transparency in the world’s largest provider of telecommunications products. Huawei has long been dogged by criticism that it is opaque and is closer to the Chinese government than he claims”.

(With information from AP)

Keep reading:

Huawei, the technological arm of the Chinese regime to monitor communications

New Investigation Exposes Huawei’s Link to China’s Communist Regime Surveillance Programs

The double discourse on Huawei and 5G that hides the real ambitions of the Xi Jinping regime

Huawei and the efforts of the Chinese regime to impose its 5G: ten lessons of history to take into account