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Oxford University halts donations and grants from Huawei

Engadget logo Engadget 1/18/2019 Mallory Locklear
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Huawei has faced increasing resistance from the US government and other countries, and now Oxford University has joined the growing number of groups distancing themselves from the company. The university, for now, will no longer accept research grants or donations from Huawei, The Guardian reports, with the ban stemming from "public concerns raised in recent months surrounding UK partnerships with Huawei."

While new funds won't be accepted from the company, Oxford says ongoing projects supported by Huawei funding will continue, and those include two projects already approved by the university that have received £692,000 in funds from Huawei.

Tensions between the US and Huawei have mounted in recent years, and this week, reports claimed that federal prosecutors had begun investigating the company over the alleged theft of trade secrets. Huawei's CFO Meng Wanzhou, arrested in Canada last month, also faces fraud charges in the US. The US government, citing security concerns over links between Huawei and the Chinese government, has banned employees, contractors and agencies from using Huawei devices, prohibited them in military base retailers and warnedUS residents and other countries against using the company's technology. Other countries, including New Zealand and Australia, have taken action against Huawei as well.

"We hope these matters can be resolved shortly and note Huawei's own willingness to reassure governments about its role and activities," Oxford said in a statement.

Huawei, for its part, has continued to push back on accusations that it's a security threat. "We were not informed of this decision and await the university's full explanation," a Huawei spokesperson told The Guardian. "As a private, employee-owned technology company, with a strong track record in R&D we believe partnership decisions should, like research, be evidence based."

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