Arrest Of Huawei Executive Revives US China Trade Tensions

Ren Zhengfei, the press-shy founder of the Chinese electronics giant Huawei, broke years of public silence on Tuesday, telling reporters that he missed his daughter Meng Wanzhou "very much" and denying any wrongdoing by his company.

Meng is Huawei's chief financial officer, and she is being detained in Canada at the request of the US. Authorities have accused Huawei of violating US sanctions by doing business with Iran, a charge Meng has denied.

Ren, despite his prominent position, is fairly reclusive. He held a press conference with reporters in Shenzhen on Tuesday where he denied suggestions that Huawei spied on behalf of the Chinese government. It was his first time speaking with the international media since 2015.

Read more: An arrest, a debutante ball, and 3 marriages: Inside the lives of the super rich Huawei dynasty

According to the Financial Times, he said Huawei had "never received any request from any government to provide improper information."

"I still love my country, I support the Communist Party, but I will never do anything to harm any country in the world," he said.

According to The Wall Street Journal, he added: "I personally would never harm the interest of my customers and me and my company would not answer to such requests."

He said justice would prevail in the case of his daughter.

US lawmakers have been fretting about Huawei for years

Meng Wanzhou, Ren's daughter, is the CFO of Huawei.
REUTERS/Alexander Bibik

Huawei is best known to consumers as the second-biggest maker of smartphones behind Samsung, but its core business is in providing telecommunications infrastructure to mobile companies around the world.

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