U.S. President Donald Trump said he was responsible for Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s decision to ban Huawei from Britain’s 5G network.
Johnson on Tuesday ordered Huawei equipment to be purged completely from Britain’s 5G network by the end of 2027, risking the ire of China by signalling that the world’s biggest telecoms equipment maker was not welcome in the West.
Washington had long been pressing for such a step, and is still calling on other European countries to make similar moves.
“We convinced many countries, many countries – I did this myself for the most part – not to use Huawei, because we think it’s an unsafe security risk, it’s a big security risk,” Trump told reporters in the White House Rose Garden on Tuesday night.
“I talked many countries out of using it: if they want to do business with us, they can’t use it. Just today, I believe that UK announced that they’re not going to be using it.”
Britain has said that its ban on Huawei is motivated by its own security concerns and by worries that supplies of Huawei gear could be interrupted by U.S. sanctions.
It denied that Trump alone was responsible for the Huawei ban.