China orders US to stop unjustified attacks on TikTok
Steph Deschamps / March 16, 2023
China has urged the United States to stop "unwarranted attacks" on the TikTok app, after a U.S. government demand that its Chinese parent company divest from it or face a ban on national security grounds
According to the Wall Street Journal and other U.S. newspapers, the White House has issued an ultimatum: if TikTok remains in the fold of ByteDance, it will be banned from the United States.
TikTok confirmed to AFP that the U.S. government had recommended the transfer of the application by its owner.
Washington "has so far not provided any evidence that TikTok threatens the national security of the United States," a spokesman for Chinese diplomacy, Wang Wenbin, told reporters Wednesday.
The United States should stop spreading misinformation about data security issues, stop unwarranted attacks [on TikTok] and provide an open, fair, just and non-discriminatory business environment" to foreign companies, the spokesman added.
TikTok is accused by its critics of giving Chinese authorities access to user data from around the world, which the short video application denies.
The White House has already banned federal employees from having the app on their smartphones, under a law ratified in early January.
The European Commission and the Canadian government have recently made similar decisions for the cell phones of their officials.
TikTok stores U.S. users' data on servers located in the country. The app admitted that China-based employees had access, but under strict and limited circumstances, and not the Chinese government.