UK set to scale back Huawei role in 5G network: report

Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei has been at the forefront of US-China trade tensions. (AFP)
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Updated 23 May 2020

UK set to scale back Huawei role in 5G network: report

  • The coronavirus pandemic has amplified scepticism over the role of the Chinese company in British infrastructure

LONDON: Britain will reduce Chinese tech giant Huawei’s controversial involvement in its 5G network in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, the Daily Telegraph reported Saturday.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson gave the green light to Huawei’s participation in January, despite widespread domestic opposition and pressure from the United States.
But he has now instructed officials to draft plans that would see China’s involvement in Britain’s infrastructure end by 2023, according to the report.
Washington has pushed hard for countries to bar Huawei from building their next generation 5G mobile networks, claiming its equipment can be used to spy for Beijing.
Johnson is due to meet US President Donald Trump next month for the G7 summit, with Britain hoping to scale up talks over a bilateral trade deal.
MPs in Johnson’s own party have led the charge against Huawei’s involvement, a movement that has gathered pace following China’s actions during the coronavirus crisis.
“He has taken a great many soundings from his own MPs on this issue and shares their serious concerns. The deal was struck before the pandemic hit but coronavirus has changed everything,” an unnamed source told the paper.
Downing Street said they would not comment on the latest report.
 


Afghan study offer draws Pakistani students

Updated 44 min 1 sec ago

Afghan study offer draws Pakistani students

  • Medicine gets top marks among 150 scholarship hopefuls

PESHAWAR: About 150 students from northwestern Pakistan traveled to Afghanistan this month to take part in tests that could win them Afghan government scholarships for higher education, particularly in medicine.  

The Afghan government pays for 104 scholarships for Pakistanis every year, the Afghan consulate in Peshawar said. 

“Medical education is expensive in Pakistan, so we decided to pursue education in Afghanistan,“ Sana Gul told Arab News.

Gul was among 150 young Pakistanis who left for Kabul last Saturday to attend the scholarship tests.

The group included 11 female students who want to study medicine. 

Gul said that the Pakistanis are hoping that security will improve in Afghanistan, and that peace talks between the Taliban and the Kabul government in Qatar will end with a power-sharing deal.

“We believe the peace process will end with good news, so we are traveling to Kabul,” said Gul, who is accompanied by her sister, Spogami. Both have passed 12th-grade exams.

Their father, Farman Khan, a teacher in the Mardan district, said that his daughters made the decision to go to Afghanistan. 

“We allowed them to decide for themselves and we will stand by them,” he said, adding that he believes the region is now safe “for those who seek education.” 

Arshad Mehsud from South Waziristan also traveled to Afghanistan for the scholarship test in the hope of studying medicine.

“There is no doctor in my village,” he said. “So after completing this degree, I will come back to serve the people of Waziristan.”