US continues pressure on UK ahead of Huawei 5G decision

The United States is making a final pitch to the UK Government, ahead of a decision on whether to upgrade its telecoms network with Huawei equipment.

The UK is expected to make a final call on how to deploy Huawei equipment in its future 5G networks later this month, while the US threatens to cut intelligence-sharing ties, people with knowledge of the matter have said.

It has been weighing US-led allegations that Huawei’s telecoms equipment could be used to spy against Britain’s relationship with Beijing and industry warnings that banning the firm outright would cost billions of dollars.

Huawei has repeatedly denied the allegations. Huawei did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is expected to press British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab over Huawei at a meeting in Washington on Thursday, the sources said.

Ahead of the decision, Washington had also planned to send a delegation, including deputy national security adviser Matt Pottinger, to meet with British officials this week. However, the trip was cancelled at the last minute due to bad weather.

“The security and resilience of the UK’s telecoms networks is of paramount importance. The government continues to consider its position on high-risk vendors and a decision will be made in due course.”

UK government spokesman

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