Hauwei indictment, ploy to discredit our interests, China tells US

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China has accused the United States of America of using its power to discredit and crack down on specific Chinese companies in an attempt to stifle their legitimate operations.

Recall that the US government had on Monday announced a 13-count criminal charges against Huawei Technologies, the world’s largest communications equipment manufacturer, and one of its top executives.

Huawei is one of China’s “national champions, promoted and protected by the ruling Communist Party

The charges which also affected two of the company’s affiliates and its Chief Financial Officer, Meng Wanzhou, details allegations of bank and wire fraud. The company also is charged with violating U.S. sanctions on Iran and conspiring to obstruct justice related to the investigation.

Canadian officials arrested Meng on a U.S. warrant Dec. 1. She has since been released on bail, and her travel is confined to Vancouver and surrounding areas. Meng could face up to 30 years if found guilty on all counts.

 

In a statement in Beijing, a Foreign Ministry spokesman decried the indictments. “For some time, the U.S. has used its government power to discredit and crack down on specific Chinese companies in an attempt to stifle their legitimate operations,” Geng Shuang said.

“We strongly urge the U.S. to stop the unreasonable suppression of Chinese companies, including Huawei, and treat Chinese companies objectively and fairly.”

The indictment threatened to further strain relations between Washington and Beijing as officials from both countries prepare for talks this week aimed at ending a months-long economic impasse that has contributed to huge swings in the stock market.

The charges grew from a long-running investigation by federal authorities into a rival Chinese telecom company, ZTE, which investigators found in 2012 was secretly diverting U.S.-made computer equipment to Iran through a front company. That probe uncovered evidence that Huawei also was diverting equipment to Iran through Skycom.

Skycom — on whose board of directors the indictment says Meng served from 2008 to 2009 — was one of the two affiliates charged. The other was Huawei Device USA.

Since Meng’s arrest, Canadian officials have stressed that her case is a legal matter, not a political one. But that message has not been consistent, complicating the standoff.

Shortly after Meng’s arrest, Trump suggested he might be willing to make a deal for her release if he could cut a trade agreement with China, raising concerns from observers about politicization of the judicial process.

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