Andrew Parker, the chief of the UK Security Service – MI5, said in an interview that he had ‘no reason to think’ the intelligence partnership with the US would suffer if ministers allow involvement from Huawei.
Britain is expected to decide how to deploy Huawei Technologies equipment in its future 5G networks later this month. Meanwhile, US officials arrived in Britain to push for Huawei’s 5G ban. Australia has already excluded the company over security fears.
Andrew, however, is not worried. He added that the links in the ‘five eyes’ intelligence partnership between Britain, the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand were ‘the strongest they’ve been’.
In May, the US government added Huawei to its trade blacklist, amid concerns that its 5G equipment enables the Chinese government to spy on other nations. Huawei has rejected the allegations, saying it operates independently of the ruling party of China.
A few months earlier, two US senators warned that private Chinese companies are required to adhere to Chinese law: “Security experts have voiced concerns that China’s vague patchwork of intelligence, national security, and cybersecurity laws compel Chinese companies to support and cooperate with intelligence work controlled by the Chinese Communist Party”, the senators said.
“I don’t want this country to be unnecessarily hostile to investment from overseas but, on the other hand, we cannot prejudice our vital national security interests,” said UK PM Boris Johnson at the NATO summit in December, explaining that the “key criterion” regarding the company was whether use of its technology would impact the UK’s intelligence sharing partnerships.