May 16, 2019 / 7:36 AM / 8 days ago

China opposes use of unilateral sanctions against its entities - ministry

BEIJING, May 16 (Reuters) - China strongly opposes other countries imposing unilateral sanctions on Chinese entities, a Commerce Ministry spokesman said in response to the latest U.S. restrictions on Chinese telecom giant Huawei Technologies Co .

The United States should avoid further impacting Sino-U.S. trade relations, spokesman Gao Feng told reporters at a weekly briefing.

The U.S. Commerce Department said on Wednesday that it was adding Huawei Technologies Co and 70 affiliates to its so-called “Entity List” in a move that bans the Chinese telecommunications giant from acquiring components and technology from U.S. firms without prior U.S. government approval.

Trump separately on Wednesday signed an executive order barring U.S. firms from using telecom equipment made by companies deemed to pose a national security risk.

The order did not specifically identify any country or company, but U.S. officials have previously labelled Huawei a “threat” and lobbied allies not to use Huawei network equipment in next-generation 5G networks.

The concept of national security is being abused, and should not be used as a tool for trade protectionism, Gao said. (Reporting by Yawen Chen and Se Young Lee; Writing by Ryan Woo; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)

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