20:06 GMT13 May 2021
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    BEIJING (Sputnik) - US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is voicing a "toxic lie" when claiming that tech giants Huawei and ZTE spy on their users and steal intellectual property, since such allegations have never been supported by evidence, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said on Tuesday.

    "What Pompeo says is a toxic lie. Pompeo claims that Huawei steals intellectual property in Israel, the United Kingdom and the United States, but we asked countless times, and every time the US side dodged answering this question because it does not have an answer. As of today, not a single country, not a single company, and not a single individual are able to present evidence that Huawei is a security threat," Hua said.

    She further pointed to the fact that it is no secret the US itself had long time ago requested that its IT companies report personal data of their users.

    On Monday, Pompeo published an op-ed in Politico-Europe in which he claimed that the record of Huawei and ZTE being implicated in acts of espionage and theft of intellectual property should be a warning that their 5G equipment might expose Europe to a massive leak of personal data and damage critical infrastructure. He encouraged the European Union to instead give preference to European companies, such as Ericsson and Nokia, and the South Korean company Samsung.

    The United States has accused Huawei of collaborating with the Chinese military and intelligence services and using its equipment for illegal surveillance. Washington has also systematically encouraged other countries to give up Huawei equipment and infrastructure in building their 5G networks. Huawei has rejected the allegations and protested the US' efforts to restrict the company's business around the world.

    Hua Chunying, Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung, South Korea, Mike Pompeo, ZTE, Huawei, US, China
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