TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A former chief of the official Canadian spy agency is urging the government to ban Huawei outbuilding Canada’s fifth-generation (5G) network entirely.
Former head of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Richard Fadden wrote in The Globe and Mail that Canada needs to “ban Huawei from Canada’s 5G networks to protect the security of Canadians.” He cited mounting evidence that the company cannot be trusted due to its close relationship with the Chinese government.
Fadden reiterated that a national intelligence law enacted by Beijing in 2017 gives the government power to force telecommunications companies into relinquishing any gathered data deemed to be of national security interest. The Chinese government also has a history of cyberespionage, he added.
The former spy chief also reminded readers of the extreme lengths the Chinese Communist Party goes to in order to achieve its strategic goals. This includes resentencing a Canadian citizen to death following a fallout over Canada’s detention of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, he said.
“If China would resort to putting Canadians to death to defend its corporate national champion, what might it do if the Chinese Communist Party had unfettered access to Canada’s vital communications networks?” Fadden wrote.
Numerous countries have already set out plans to ban Huawei’s participation in their 5G network rollout including the U.S., Germany, New Zealand, and Australia. Private institutions have joined the global backlash against the firm, including the U.K.’s Oxford University, which halted donations and research grants from Huawei on Jan. 17.
Although it may be the best move to protect Canada’s national security interests, banning Huawei would entrench the country further in its already precarious situation when it comes to dealing with Beijing. Aside from the one citizen currently on death row, China are yet to release the two Canadian nationals arbitrarily arrested following the initial detention of Meng Wanzhou.