Canada denies visas to Huawei employees over spying concerns
(Image Credit: iStockPhoto/Amanda Lewis)
Canadian immigration has denied entry visas to a couple of Huawei employees over potential spying, a concern which the company has been accused of several times in the past.
An immigration officer at Canada's Hong Kong consulate told one of two applicants being denied a visa over spying concerns "there are reasonable grounds to believe that you are a member of the inadmissible class of persons described in section 34(1)(f) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act."
The second applicant cleared the immigration checks but had their visa rejected over concerns about their spouse. Letters from the officials denying entry to Huawei's employees were sent to the South China Morning Post.
Both employees deny being spies and it's possible the visa applications were filed without the knowledge of Huawei. Well Trend United, the immigration company supporting their applications, said it was "puzzled" as other Huawei staff has been granted visas in the past which shows concerns are likely about the individuals and not the company itself.
Huawei has often been under the spotlight due to its founder's link to the Chinese military. Ren Zhengfei had been a soldier in the People's Liberation Army (PLA) but denies still having connections. This link has been highlighted by several other countries in which Huawei operates as being a potential security risk.
In the UK, Huawei equipment is checked by its national security agency GCHQ in a specialist center in Banbury called the Cyber Security Evaluation Centre (HCSE) which has proved to be a mutually agreed solution to addressing concerns. "We are pleased that the model of the UK government, the telecom operators, and Huawei working together in an open and transparent way has been recognised as the best approach for providing reassurance on the security of products and solutions deployed in the UK," Huawei said in a statement.
Both visa refusals have been appealed against by the two people concerned.
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