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Trump reiterates Huawei as 'national security threat'

Despite this, the Commerce Department is extending its reprieve allowing Huawei to do business with US companies.


President Donald Trump says he doesn't want to do business with Huawei "because it is a national security threat."

Nicholas Kamm / AFP / Getty Images

President Donald Trump reasserted the danger he feels Huawei poses to the US on Sunday, saying again that he doesn't want to deal with the controversial Chinese telecom, according to Reuters. He also noted that exempting some parts of Huawei's business from a broader ban would be "very complicated."

"At this moment it looks much more like we're not going to do business," he told reporters. "I don't want to do business at all because it is a national security threat and I really believe that the media has covered it a little bit differently than that."

Huawei has long been a target of US lawmakers over concerns about its links with the Chinese government and fears that its equipment could be used to spy on other countries and companies. Huawei has repeatedly denied those allegations. It has also moved forward with plans to build its own mobile operating system.

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That apparent threat led the US Commerce Department to blacklist Huawei in May, requiring American companies to get a license in order to conduct business with Huawei, following an executive order from Trump that effectively banned Huawei from US communications networks. 

The Commerce Department granted Huawei a limited reprieve from the restrictions, but that expires Monday. The department is extending that reprieve, Larry Kudlow, director of the National Economic Council, told NBC's Meet the Press on Sunday.

"I think it's a good faith action … helping American companies who need a couple more months to make adjustments if they can get licenses," he said.

Neither the Commerce Department, the White House nor Huawei immediately responded to requests for comment.

First published at 4:30 a.m. PT.
Update, 5:30 a.m. PT: Adds more detail and notes Kudlow's comments.