Following a report from the New York Times earlier this week that such a move was imminent, Chinese telecommunications company Huawei has announced that it is suing the United States government for restricting federal agencies from using its products as it continues to hit back against claims that it poses a national security risk.
As expected, the announcement appears to be an attempt to force the U.S. government to show its hand for its reasons for barring the company’s technology. The lawsuit aims to challenge the “constitutionality” of Section 889 of the National Defense Authorization Act, part of the bill signed by President Donald Trump in August that restricted Huawei and ZTE technology for government workers.
Several Huawei executives took the stage during a news conference at its Shenzhen headquarters on Thursday to speak on the provision they said was “not only unlawful but hurts both Huawei and U.S. consumers.” The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in the Eastern District of Texas, home of its U.S. headquarters, per the Wall Street Journal:
In its suit, Huawei also argues that the law violates its right to due process and is a violation of the separation of powers between Congress and other branches of government. On Wednesday night, the White House referred questions about the Huawei lawsuit to the Justice Department, which declined to comment.
In its lawsuit, the company is seeking an injunction and asking for a declaration that the provisions are unconstitutional.
The company maintained that it had a “solid track record in cybersecurity” and contested claims by the U.S. government that Huawei presents a national security threat as a spy arm for China. The company accused the U.S. government of a smear campaign intended to topple its pursuit of 5G networks in international markets and alleged that the U.S. had “hacked our server and stolen our emails and our source code.”
“Maybe the U.S. government incorrectly believes it would benefit from the suppression of Huawei,” the company’s Rotating Chairman Guo Ping said during the press conference. “But the truth is, restricting Huawei’s contribution to American and other nations’ 5G networks will only harm their national interests. Faster 5G deployment can benefit all countries.”
An already messy situation just got even more complicated.