Huawei sues US government over technology ban
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Huawei sues US government over technology ban

Chinese telecommunications company Huawei filed a lawsuit Wednesday against the US government to block the enforcement of a law that prohibits government agencies from using equipment from Huawei. 

The lawsuit marks the latest escalation of a dispute that has already seen the US government warn citizens against purchasing Huawei products and ban their sale on military bases.

The government alleges that Huawei and other Chinese technology firms could be compelled to provide access to their data and systems. Robert Strayer, America’s top cyber official, warned attendees at the Mobile World Congress in February that, “Chinese laws require these firms to support and assist Beijing’s mass security apparatus without any democratic checks and balances on access to or use of data that touches the network or equipment.”

The lawsuit targets a section of the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, which prevents the government or its contractors from using Huawei’s technology, alleging that the provision violates Huawei’s Bill of Attainder right by targeting it specifically. The complaint states, “even where the Framers otherwise granted Congress enumerated legislative powers, they prohibited it from using those powers to enact bills of attainder that impose punishment on specific individuals identified by the legislature.” The complaint goes on to argue that Congress violated the Due Process and Vesting Clauses by adjudicating Huawei a threat to national security outside of the courts and without providing the company an opportunity to defend itself.

A similar suit brought by Russian cyber defense firm Kaspersky Labs was thrown out last May. That decision was affirmed on appeal in November.