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Merkel’s CDU Party Calls for Huawei Restriction From 5G Network

Arne Delfs

(Bloomberg) -- Germany’s ruling Christian Democrats approved a motion on Saturday that calls on the government to restrict Chinese equipment supplier Huawei Technologies Co. from participating in the country’s planned 5G network.

Merkel’s Own Party Wants Outright Huawei Ban From 5G Networks

“Only those suppliers can be trustworthy that are not under the influence of undemocratic states without a functioning rule of law,” reads the text approved during the party convention in Leipzig.

While the motion doesn’t specifically mention Huawei, the debate preceding its approval left no doubt.

“Big companies in China have by law to serve the interest of the Communist party in China and cooperate with Chinese intelligence,” said Norbert Roettgen, head of the parliamentary committee on foreign relations. “And therefore it must be clear -- we cannot entrust Germany’s 5G network to the Chinese state and its Communist leadership.”

Roettgen’s speech was met with strong applause. A previous proposal had called for an outright ban of Huawei, something the government said would not be tenable.

Urged by hawks in Germany’s intelligence service and the U.S. administration, the government recently agreed to ratchet up restrictions on Huawei that would block its components from the core network but allow them in less sensitive areas. Concerns in Washington and Berlin are over the risks of Huawei’s ties to the Chinese government and 5G’s susceptibility to sabotage or espionage.

Chancellor Angela Merkel recently signaled she wouldn’t consider the CDU motion as binding.

(Updates with context.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Arne Delfs in Leipzig at adelfs@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond Colitt

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