The UK Prime Minister (PM) Boris Johnson shared the view on Monday, January 27, 2020, that granting Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. (Huawei) of 5G network permission would ensure benefits to Britons and would not affect the national security at the same time. The UK leaders including the National Security Council (NSC) members are scheduled to meet on Tuesday to discuss the Huawei issues related to the 5G network in the country.
Fear of Chinese Intelligence Meddling Britain Secrets
The PM, Johnson made a statement on Monday that Huawei’s new 5G technology would benefit Britons without compromising the national security of Britain. With the news for Huawei’s proposal for a 5G license in Britain recently surfaced, Johnson has been under the pressure as Washington and some members of his ruling Conservative Party urged him not to grant license of the 5G network to the Chinese telecommunication company.
The main concern was that Chinese intelligence would gain access to British secrets by using Huawei’s 5G network in Britain. However, the Chinese tech company denied such a conspiracy.
Johnson will meet his senior government ministers on Tuesday to discuss the issue of whether the UK government would ban Huawei’s 5G proposal or allow it to limited access in limited areas. A Conservative member who was the former head of the British parliament’s foreign affairs committee, Tom Tugendhat stated that granting Huawei access to Britain’s 5G network was to “nesting that dragon” and “allowing the fox into the hen house when really we should be guarding the wire.”
Meeting with the National Security Council
The UK minister for digital and broadband, Matt Warman told parliament that Britain welcomed Huawei’s proposal but the country needed assurances about national security. Warman stated, “We welcome open trade and inward investment.
However, our economy can only prosper and unleash Britain’s potential when we and our international partners are assured that our critical national infrastructure remains safe and secure.” Warman said the NSC, the key agency for national security, would meet the leaders of the government on Tuesday to discuss the matter.
Revealing an optimistic view, Johnson said, “There is no reason why we shouldn’t have technological progress here in the UK, allow consumers, businesses in the UK to have access to fantastic technology, to fantastic communications but also protect our security interests and protect our key partnerships with other security powers around the world,”
To assure confidence to the US-led Five Eyes intelligence alliance, the PM declared, “So the Five Eyes security relationships we have, we have got to keep them strong and safe. We are going to come up with a solution that enables us to achieve both those objectives.”
In the backdrop of the US opposition to the Chinese’s proposal, Huawei officials explained that Washington wanted the company to fail the 5G network proposal in Britain because no American company could offer the same facility of 5G technology at such competitive price. Former Prime Minister Theresa May agreed in 2019 had granted Huawei limited access to non-core parts of the 5G network. Meanwhile, the US was opposing Huawei’s move saying that the division between core and non-core would remain unclear in the case of 5G networks.
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