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U. S. cyber official British telco’s to discuss Huawei in London meeting

FILE PHOTO: Huawei sign is seen on a building in Vilnius, Lithuania, 30 March 2019. REUTERS/Ints Kalnins/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) – the Security of the officials of the British telecom operators are to meet with the leading AMERICAN diplomat on cybersecurity in London on Tuesday to discuss the risks of equipment from China’s Huawei, according to five people familiar with the matter.

The closed door meeting comes after sources told Reuters last week that Britain has decided to bar China’s Huawei Technologies, the core of a 5G network, but will still allow it in non-core parts with a number of increased restrictions.

The United States has said it sees no distinction between core and non-core components of the future 5G networks and warned that the limited cooperation with allies that use Huawei equipment, which it says can be used by Beijing for spying. Huawei has denied it spies for China.

Robert Strayer, deputy assistant secretary for cyber at the u.s. State Department, will repeat that message on Tuesday in an interview with the security and technology of the officials of the operators, including BT, Vodafone and O2, owned by spain’s Telefonica, the sources said.

The AMERICAN embassy in London was not immediately available for comment. The operators declined to comment.

A person from one of the operators, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that they would go with an open mind to the meeting.

“We will go and listen to their perspective, but we take an evidence-based approach,” the source said.

Reporting by Jack Stubbs and Kate Holton; editing by Guy Faulconbridge

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