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NATO takes Huawei security concerns seriously: Stoltenberg

AFP  |  Brussels 

Security concerns about the role of in Western telecom infrastructure are to be taken seriously, the of said Thursday, as steps up pressure on not to use the Chinese firm.

Secretary said the 29-member alliance has begun internal consultations on Huawei, which the US says poses a "threat" to

The US and several other Western nations have shut out of tenders for the development of super-fast fifth-generation, or 5G, networks, because of the company's close ties to the

"Some allies have expressed their concerns over and their role in providing infrastructure. NATO takes these concerns very seriously," Stoltenberg told reporters.

"We are now consulting closely on this issue including on the security aspects on investments in networks."

German said on Tuesday that would consult over using after reports of US threats to scale back intelligence cooperation.

reported Monday that had warned that could cut intelligence and other information exchanges if was built into Germany's

The Chinese telecoms behemoth has strenuously denied allegations its equipment could be used for espionage.

US Curtis Scaparrotti, NATO's in Europe, outlined concerns about Huawei to US lawmakers on Wednesday.

"We're concerned about their backbone being compromised in the sense that, particularly with 5G, the bandwidth capability and ability to pull data is incredible," he told the

If is used in defence communications systems, the would no longer communicate with them, Scaparrotti said.

Next-generation will bring near-instantaneous connectivity that can enable such as self-driving cars.

Stoltenberg said creating was a trade and economic issue but also had security implications.

"That's the reason why we will continue to consult, continue to assess and look into whether NATO has a role to play in addressing the securty aspects related to this kind of infrastcture," he said.

NATO has been stepping up its defences against cyber warfare in recent years as the domain takes on an increasingly vital role in modern conflict.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, March 14 2019. 19:55 IST