An unnamed State Department official told the paper that the USA won't cut Germany out of its intelligence sharing network altogether, but it wouldn't be able to share with the same transparency for fear of the information reaching China. According to the Wall Street Journal, US Ambassador Richard A. Grenell sent a letter to the German economy minister, which said that Berlin should discriminate against Chinese companies like Huawei when selecting providers of 5G equipment to upgrade its networks.
Now, the States, perturbed by Germanys refusal to impose company specific restriction from German communications regulator Bundesnetzagentur (BNetzA) for its 5G infrastructure has issued a stern warning to Germany threatening to cut down on the intelligence it shares with Germany if Huawei wins a contract to build the country's next-generation 5G network.
Berlin said that the USA failed to provide any evidence that Chinese products would pose a security threat, adding it was willing to use them as long as they comply with Germany's recently reviewed cybersecurity standards.
The US is trying to recruit Germany in its campaign against Huawei. The US government has long maintained that companies like Huawei and ZTE have close ties with the Chinese government.
Huawei recently filed a lawsuit against the U.S. government for labeling it a security risk and limiting its access to the American market.
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Washington claims that Huawei - the world's biggest telecoms equipment supplier - has been stealing commercial information and spying on behalf of the Chinese government.
In the letter to Germany's economics minister dated last Friday, Mr Grenell said secure communications systems are essential for defence and intelligence co-operation, and that firms like Huawei could compromise this.
Germany is opening bids for its 5G infrastructure project next week.
The year ended with the arrest of Huawei's chief financial officer in Canada at United States request, to the consternation of China. Germany also concluded through an internal investigation that Huawei would not be able to intercept data using the equipment. The company believes that National Defense Authorization Act violates the US Constitution by "punishing" Chinese companies without trial or evidence.