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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Ant Group, the Chinese fintech affiliate of Alibaba (NYSE: BABA), is seeking a buyer for Kansas City-based biometric security firm EyeVerify, per the Financial Times.

Why it matters: This reflects festering tech tensions between Beijing and D.C., particularly when it comes to things like facial recognition software. It's also part of Ant's efforts to generate liquidity after being forced to scrap what was to be the largest-ever IPO.

The bottom line: "EyeVerify designs eye verification technology for mobile devices which is used by U.S. banks including Wells Fargo. Ant bought EyeVerify for $100 million in 2016, a purchase which was approved by CFIUS, the panel that scrutinizes deals for potential national security risks," the Financial Times writes.

The big picture: Ex-Google CEO Eric Schmidt and others have called for U.S.-China tech bifurcation.

Go deeper

Jan 26, 2021 - World

Former Google CEO and others call for U.S.-China tech "bifurcation"

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

A new set of proposals by a group of influential D.C. insiders and tech industry practitioners calling for a degree of "bifurcation" in the U.S. and Chinese tech sectors is circulating in the Biden administration. Axios has obtained a copy.

Why it matters: The idea of "decoupling" certain sectors of the U.S. and Chinese economies felt radical three years ago, when Trump's trade war brought the term into common parlance. But now the strategy has growing bipartisan and even industry support.

Fight over Putin's pipeline consumes Congress

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Biden administration, House and Senate Democrats and even the German government are engaged in a multi-pronged effort to stop Congress from imposing mandatory sanctions on a Kremlin-backed natural gas pipeline.

Why it matters: President Biden's decision to let Nord Stream 2 proceed has put his allies in an uncomfortable bind. Republicans have already blocked dozens of Biden's foreign-policy nominees, and the dispute threatened to derail an annual defense bill passed by Congress every year for six decades.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Shooting at Michigan high school leaves 3 dead, 8 wounded

Police cars restrict access to Oxford High School following the shooting in Oxford, Michigan, on Tuesday. Photo: Matthew Hatcher/Getty Images)

A 15-year-old sophomore was arrested after a shooting at a Michigan high school that left three people dead and eight others wounded Wednesday, according to the Oakland County Sheriff's Office.

The latest: Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said at a briefing Tuesday night that the suspect's father had on Friday bought the 9mm Sig Sauer pistol investigators believe was used in the shooting at Oxford High School. Authorities released the names of the victims late Tuesday.