British PM Theresa May sacks defence secretary Williamson over Huawei leak reports

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London [UK]: British Prime Minister Theresa May has on Wednesday sacked Gavin Williamson, the nation’s defence secretary, following an inquiry into an alleged leaked news reports that the United Kingdom government has green signalled China’s giant tech Huawei to develop the next-generation 5G network.

“The Prime Minister has this evening asked Gavin Williamson to leave the government, having lost confidence in his ability to serve in the role of the defence secretary and as a member of her Cabinet,” a government spokesperson was quoted by CNN as saying.

According to ANI news reports, Williamson posted a letter on his official Twitter handle, “strenuously” denying being the source of report leak, adding he opt not to accept May’s offer for him to resign as, if done so, it would suggest he was guilty.

In the letter, Williamson wrote, “I am sorry that you feel leaks from the National Security council originated in my department. I emphatically believe this was not the case. I strongly deny that I was in any way involved in this leak and I am confident that a thorough and formal inquiry would have vindicated my position.”

He appreciated May’s offer to resign but claimed it would directly mean he, his military advisers, civil servants or staff were responsible.

May, in a letter to Williamson, said the matter was “extremely serious”m as well as, a “deeply disappointing one”.

According to alleged leaked reports by the Daily Telegraph published on April 25, May approved Huawei to build its own next-generation 5G network, setting asides cautions and warning from the United States and British senior ministers.

Washington has banned Huawei’s building 5G technology from its nation and has also urged its allies – New Zealand, Australia, Canada and British – to follow his instruction. The US has long lobbied Europe to ban Huawei tech, stating the threat of espionage by the Chinese government using Huawei equipment.

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