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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

The U.K. said Tuesday that it will no longer allow Chinese tech company Huawei to access its 5G network amid growing pressure on Prime Minister Boris Johnson to take a stand against Beijing, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: It's a big win for the Trump administration, which has sought to firewall Huawei from networks around the world and put intense pressure on its closest ally to make such a move.

  • Huawei works closely with the Chinese government, arguably leaving the company's equipment susceptive to malign actors.
  • The U.K. already banned Huawei from accessing its core communications networks earlier this year.

What they're saying: "This has not been an easy decision, but it is the right one for the U.K.'s telecoms networks, for our national security and our economy, both now and indeed in the long run," Oliver Dowden, the U.K. government's telecom minister, told the House of Commons.

  • "This government is clear-eyed about China. ... What we want is a modern and mature relationship with China based on mutual respect," he added.

The other side: China contends that the U.S. is milking security concerns as a means to oust economic competition.

Go deeper

Oct 20, 2020 - World

China embraces hostage diplomacy

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Chinese government is threatening to detain foreign citizens unless their home governments do what Beijing demands. In some cases, China has already made good on those threats.

The big picture: This marks a potential evolution of China's "wolf warrior diplomacy" to outright rogue state behavior, putting it in the company of countries like North Korea and Iran, which have also engaged in hostage diplomacy.

Oct 20, 2020 - World

Right-wing media falsely ties Black Lives Matter movement to Beijing

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Right-wing outlets and commentators have recently spread a false claim linking the Chinese Communist Party to the Black Lives Matter movement.

Why it matters: Such claims raise concerns that a real issue — that of Chinese government interference in U.S. politics — could be wrongly invoked along partisan lines to attack Americans engaging in legitimate activities.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Oct 20, 2020 - Energy & Environment

The U.S.-China climate rupture

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Well that, as Ron Burgundy would say, escalated quickly. China's foreign ministry is accusing the Trump administration of "major retrogression" on climate and being an environmental "troublemaker."

Why it matters: China's unusual statement Monday widens the rupture between the world's largest carbon emitters as global climate efforts are flagging and the pandemic's effect on emissions is too small to be consequential in the long term.