Huawei has today mounted a legal challenge to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), seeking the court to overturn an unlawful order passed by the commission on Nov. 22.
The FCC order bans carriers in rural America from tapping the Universal Service Fund (USF) to purchase Huawei equipment.
In a petition filed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, Huawei asks the court to hold the FCC’s order unlawful on the grounds that it fails to offer Huawei required due process protections in labelling Huawei as a national security threat.
Huawei believes that the FCC also fails to substantiate its arbitrary findings with evidence or sound reasoning or analysis, in violation of the U.S. Constitution, the Administrative Procedure Act, and other laws.
“Banning a company like Huawei, just because we started in China – this does not solve cyber security challenges,” Huawei’s Chief Legal Officer Dr. Song Liuping said at a press conference.
Song said both FCC chairman Ajit Pai and other FCC commissioners failed to present any evidence to prove their claim that Huawei constitutes a security threat, and ignored the facts and objections raised by Huawei and rural carriers after the FCC first made the proposal in March, 2018.
“Huawei also submitted 21 rounds of detailed comments, explaining how the order will harm people and businesses in remote areas. The FCC ignored them all,” he said.
“Carriers across rural America, in small towns in Montana, Kentucky, and farms in Wyoming – they choose to work with Huawei because they respect the quality and integrity of our equipment,” Song added. “The FCC should not shut down joint efforts to connect rural communities in the U.S.”
Glen Nager, Huawei’s lead counsel for the legal action, said the FCC has simply adopted a standard-less rule that, by its own admission, was designed with only Huawei and another Chinese company in mind.
In addition, Nager said the decision adopted by FCC exceeds the agency’s “statutory authority,” as the FCC is not authorized to make national security judgements or to restrict the use of USF funds based on such judgments. “Indeed, the Commission has no national security expertise or authority.”
In a nutshell, all restrictions pounded on-to Huawei sound from the US entity list sanctions against the Chinese brand.