Germany to Open Its 5G Market to Huawei Despite US Pressure – Report
20:05 14.10.2019
by Tim Korso

Previously, the US threatened to cut its allies off from intelligence-sharing programmes if they allow Chinese tech giant Huawei to participate in the construction of their high-speed 5G networks. Despite this, many countries have ignored these threats.

A draft version of a new set of security requirements for telecommunications networks in Germany does not contain a controversial clause that would effectively ban China’s Huawei from taking part in the construction of 5G networks, Handelsblatt newspaper reports, citing an obtained document.

According to the outlet, the previously discussed provision, which required 5G network components to be acquired from "trusted suppliers" only, disappeared from the new regulation's text after pressure from the Ministry for Economic Affairs and the office of Chancellor Angela Merkel. This means that Huawei, whose products’ security standards have been questioned by the US, will still be able to participate in the construction of the high-speed information network for the EU’s largest economy.
FILE - In this Jan. 29, 2019, file photo, the logos of Huawei are displayed at its retail shop window reflecting the Ministry of Foreign Affairs office in Beijing
© AP Photo / Andy Wong
FILE - In this Jan. 29, 2019, file photo, the logos of Huawei are displayed at its retail shop window reflecting the Ministry of Foreign Affairs office in Beijing

Handelsblatt further indicates that the draft document, which could be published at the end of this or at the beginning of the next year, delegates the right to determine what constitutes critical infrastructure to the network operators themselves. Critical or core infrastructure of 5G networks will, however, be subject to inspections by Germany's Office for Information Security, which will check if the components are fully manageable and able to pass safety tests.

Huawei's access to 5G markets around the world was endangered by US actions in 2019, after Washington threatened to cut its allies' access to intelligence-sharing programmes if they don't ban the Chinese giant from their high-speed networks. The US claims that Huawei is cooperating with the Chinese government and is helping it spy on its clients by installing backdoors in its equipment.
In this July 30, 2019, file photo a woman walks by a Huawei retail store in Beijing.
© AP Photo / Andy Wong
In this July 30, 2019, file photo a woman walks by a Huawei retail store in Beijing.

Both Huawei and Beijing deny the allegations and have slammed the US for what they consider to be false accusations. Most countries have ignored Washington's threats, with the UK reportedly mulling over granting the Chinese company access to non-critical infrastructure and France giving its operators a carte-blanche on whether or not to use Huawei's equipment. However, several countries, namely Japan, New Zealand, and Australia, have listened to the US exhortations and banned the tech giant from their 5G networks.





US imposes sanctions on Turkey over Syria operation
WASHINGTON-Anadolu Agency
October 15 2019 10:19:10

The U.S. Treasury Department announced sanctions on Oct. 14 on two Turkish ministries and three senior government officials over Turkey’s anti-terror operation in northeastern Syria.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Oct. 14 said he would authorize sanctions against Turkish officials, stop negotiating with Turkey on a $100 billion trade deal, and boost tariffs on the country's steel to 50 percent over Ankara's military operation.

"The United States of America simply is not going to tolerate Turkey's invasion in Syria any further. We are calling on Turkey to stand down, end the violence and come to the negotiating table," Vice President Mike Pence told reporters.

Washington imposed sanctions on Turkey’s Ministry of National Defense and Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources and also on Minister of National Defense Hulusi Akar, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Fatih Dönmez and Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu.

"We are prepared to impose additional sanctions on Government of Turkey officials and entities, as necessary," the department said in a statement.

According to U.S. law, those mentioned on the sanctions list face blocking of their properties (if any) and are prevented from having trade relations with the U.S.

Republican U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham said on Oct. 14 that he "strongly" supports U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to sanction Turkey.

"The President's team has a plan and I intend to support them as strongly as possible, and to give them reasonable time and space to achieve our mutual goals," Graham said in a statement.

The move was quickly criticized as too little, too late by the top Democrat in Congress.

"His announcement of a package of sanctions against Turkey falls very short of reversing that humanitarian disaster," said U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Turkey launched Operation Peace Spring on Oct. 9 to eliminate terrorists from northern Syria in order to secure Turkey’s borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees and ensure Syria’s territorial integrity.

Ankara wants to clear northern Syria east of the Euphrates of the terrorist PKK and its Syrian offshoot, the PYD/YPG.

The U.S.-backed SDF, a group dominated by the YPG, has been controlling some 28 percent of the Syrian territories, including the most of the 911-kilometer-long Syria-Turkey border.

Turkey deems the YPG the Syrian offshoot of the illegal PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organization also by the United States and the EU.

The announcement came shortly after U.S. President Donald Trump said his administration "will soon" be issuing an executive order authorizing the possible imposition of sanctions on Turkey, including on current and former government officials.

In a statement posted on Twitter, he added that steel tariffs will again be raised to 50% and negotiations for a $100 billion trade deal will be stopped "immediately" by the U.S. Commerce Department.

In a press briefing with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, Vice President Mike Pence said Trump asked Turkey to halt its operation and to enact an immediate ceasefire and begin negotiations with the PYD/YPG.

"The president has directed me to lead a delegation to Turkey to begin these talks," said Pence.

Turkey’s leaders have repeatedly said the operation does not target Kurds, contrary to rhetoric from anti-Turkey circles, which allege that the Turkish military is harming civilians and the fight against the remnants of the ISIL terror group.

On Oct. 12, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said Turkey would assume responsibility for ISIL elements held in detention centers in northern Syria.