BEIJING – China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Friday his government supported Huawei’s legal battle for the protection of its rights and interests in the United States.
Wang told reporters during the 19th Communist Party of China National Congress that Beijing also backed the Chinese tech giant’s Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou, who was arrested on Dec. 1 in Vancouver and is currently out on bail.
“We support the company and the individual in question in seeking legal redress to protect their own interests and refusing to be victimized like ‘silent lambs,’” Wang said.
“What we are standing up for is not just the interests of a company, but also a country or a nation’s legitimate right to development – and by extension, the basic right of all countries who wish to climb up the technology ladder,” the minister said.
Wang said US actions against Huawei were certainly not a pure judicial case but a deliberate political attempt to bring the Chinese firm down.
The minister’s statement came a day after Huawei filed a lawsuit challenging the US government following the imposition of restrictions on the company’s products. The company also accused Washington of hacking its servers.
Meng, who is not allowed to leave her mansion in the Canadian city as she faces extradition to the US, have been accused by the US Department of Justice of fraud and conspiracy to bypass the sanctions imposed by Washington on Iran.
Huawei has also been indicted for its involvement in alleged industrial espionage against a US-based competitor.
The US moves came amid a bilateral trade dispute between Washington and Beijing. The two countries are currently engaged in a tense series of bilateral trade talks aimed at staving off a trade war.
Wang, however, emphasized that the history of ties between the two countries exemplified that they would “gain from cooperation and lose from confrontation.”
“The key is to put things in perspective. Exaggerating our competition out of all proportion would squeeze our space for cooperation,” the minister said.
“China and America may have competition, but we don’t have to be rivals. Instead, we should strive to be partners,” he said and added that trade war in a globalized world is “particularly unhelpful, as it will harm the initiator as well as the target country.”
He said China still had a positive outlook regarding the relation between the two countries, stressing that a cold war-like posture would favor none.
He said some forces wanted to create a wedge between the two economies but separating from China would mean going away from opportunities, future and other things, to some extent.