18:42 GMT04 August 2020
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): In a cautious move ahead of the planned rollout, India has asked Australia to share the in-depth details that prompted the Turnbull government to ban Chinese tech giant Huawei from the country's 5G network.

    Sources claimed that the two countries had discussed the matter at length during the high-level cybersecurity dialogue held in New Delhi last week. Requests were made just ahead of New Delhi's much-awaited decision on Huawei.

    Last week, the Indian foreign ministry said that top officials from the two sides have discussed "critical technologies" at the third India-Australia Cyber Policy Dialogue in New Delhi.

    "Both countries acknowledge that greater international cooperation is required to address the cybersecurity risks currently posed by insecure IoT devices, and [to] shape and align security standards for IoT (Internet of Things) devices globally," the foreign ministry said while emphasizing that the two countries would cooperate to promote "security by design" as a core element of IoT development.

    Sources also added that similar kinds of queries were made before, and India and the US both have already discussed concerns over Chinese equipment last month.

    "We understand there are certain security concerns that have been raised," Ambassador Harsh Vardhan Shringla, India's envoy to the United States, told the Washington Examiner on Monday. "We do understand, also that there is a need to ensure that the best economical options are also considered. And in that context, I think, we will examine all options before we make a decision — including, as I said, alternative technologies that may come up."

    Meanwhile, India has set up another inter-ministerial panel on 5G that will recommend whether New Delhi should go ahead with foreign equipment beyond trials which could start in 2020 and with 6 companies contending for the rights including Chinese Huawei. The first inter-ministerial panel, however, did not recommend a ban on Huawei in the 5G trial.

    On Monday, Huawei once again reiterated their demand to take an independent decision on permitting 5G trials in the country.

    "We hope that the Indian government will treat all foreign investments fairly and justly, providing a level-playing field to all investments. We also hope that the India government will make an independent decision on 5G for the long-term benefit of India, irrespective of the country of origin," Huawei India Chief Executive Officer, Jay Chen, said on Monday evening while speaking at the CII India China Economic Cooperation Forum in New Delhi.

    The US has repeatedly accused Huawei of installing so-called backdoors on its products to allegedly assist Beijing in espionage efforts, something the company and the Chinese government vehemently deny.


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