Downloads of Chinese TikTok and WeChat apps will be banned in the United States starting Sunday, commerce said Friday citing threats to «national security.»
«The Communist Party of China has shown that it has the means and intent to use these applications to threaten U.S. national security, foreign policy, and the economy,» the U.S. department said in a statement.
The United States thus meets President Donald Trump’s threat against these two Chinese applications, against a back-to-back of major tensions between the two economic giants.
Read: China prefers to close TikTok in the US than sell it
Washington leaves, however, an open door for TikTok, a very popular app among young people to share short videos, before banning it altogether from operating on its territory.
«The president leaves until November 12 to resolve TikTok’s national security issues. Bans could be lifted if necessary,» Commerce said.
TikTok, which belongs to the Chinese group ByteDance, had been operating under conditions in the United States since early August.
Trump, who accuses him of spying for the Chinese government, then signed a decree to demand the sale of his U.S. activities by September 20, under penalty of ban in the country.
American giants Microsoft and Walmart made an offer to buy those TikTok activities, but ByteDance turned it down on Sunday.
Find out: TikTok sues Trump administration for «politicized» ban
California’s Oracle software group submitted an offer to become TikTok’s «trusted technology partner,» although no details have been disclosed.
«Although the threats posed by WeChat and TikTok are not identical, they are similar. Each collects significant amounts of user data,» Commerce said.
The WeChat platform, which belongs to Chinese giant Tencent, is ubiquitous in chinese life for messaging, remote payments and bookings, among other uses.
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