On Monday the Indian government banned fifty nine Chinese cell phone apps, including TikTok and WeChat, citing national security and privacy concerns. The move comes as tensions between India and China have escalated from a June 15th event where twenty Indian soldiers were killed by the Chinese army along a disputed area of the India-China border.
India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said in a media statement the Chinese cell phones apps were “stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorized manner to servers which have locations outside India.”
“The compilation of these data, its mining and profiling by elements hostile to national security and defense of India, which ultimately impinges upon the sovereignty and integrity of India, is a matter of very deep and immediate concern which requires emergency measures,” the statement added.
“Chinese mobile app firms and other tech firms are beholden to the CCP under Chinese law,” Brahma Chellaney, a former adviser to India’s National Security Council, tweeted on Monday, referring to the country’s ruling Communist Party. “As extensions of the Chinese state, they pose a national security risk.”
India is a huge market for TikTok, according late a recent report thirty percent of TikTok’s two billion downloads came from India . Messaging app WeChat, owned by Chinese internet company Tencent, has more than one billion users worldwide.
Both the U.S. and European governments are currently investigating TikTok, which is owned by the Chinese company ByteDance. The investigations are focused on data-collection practices and national security concerns. Along side of the investigations several US government agencies, including the Transportation Security Administration, the State Department, the Department of Homeland Security, the Navy, and the Army, have banned the use of the app on government-issued devices, citing security concerns over ByteDance’s connections to the Chinese government.
SCOTUS Denies House Dems, Hands Trump Another Victory in Battle Against Fake Russia Probe
Democrats in the House of Representatives had their request to see previously unreleased documents from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into wither there was collaboration between Russia and the Trump administration denied Wednesday by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Originally in 2019 the House Democrats requested the sealed documentations from the Mueller probe, which includes grand jury testimony, as they prepared for the impeachment hearings and proceedings against President Trump. The Democrats have suggested that the grand jury materials could reveal new misconduct that could potentially form the basis of new articles of impeachment.In March of this year the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit agreed with the the Democrat lead House Judiciary Committee and called for the release of the documents.
In response to the demand both the White House and the Department of Justice asked the Supreme Court to block access to the documentation.
In a brief to the Supreme Court, Solicitor General Noel Francisco alleged that the Democrat majority Congress had no need to see the documents since President Trump had already been impeached and acquitted. Francisco also noted that no indication had been provided by the House Judiciary Committee or the House of Representatives that another impeachment would be happening in the future.
The high court’s action will keep the documents out of congressional hands at least until the case is resolved, which is not likely to happen before 2021. The delay is a victory for President Trump, who also is mounting a court fight against congressional efforts to obtain his banking and other financial records. Those cases are expected to be decided in the coming days or weeks.
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