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US judge again blocks Trump's executive order to ban WeChat

Saturday - October 24, 2020 9:51 am , Category : SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
San Francisco, Oct 24 (IANS) A US judge has once again halted President Donald Trump's executive order to ban WeChat, a Chinese messaging social-media and mobile-payment app.
A judge in California rejected a request from the US Department of Justice to reverse a previous decision allowing WeChat, owned by the Chinese company Tencent app, to remain active in app stores, The Verge reported on Friday.
"The record does not support the conclusion that the government has ‘narrowly tailored' the prohibited transactions to protect its national-security interests," the judge said.
The evidence "supports the conclusion that the restrictions ‘burden substantially more speech than is necessary to further the government's legitimate interests.'"
On August 6, Trump issued an executive order banning US transactions via WeChat.
To fight for the legal rights of all WeChat users in the country, USWUA which is an NGO sued the Trump administration for the ban. The lawsuit opened in court on September 17.
Meanwhile, the US Department of Justice earlier this month appealed against a recent federal court ruling that barred the Trump administration's attempt to block TikTok downloads.
Judge Carl Nichols of the US District Court for the District of Columbia late last month halted the ban after TikTok's attorneys argued that the US administration's ban infringes on rights to free speech and due process.
The government began the appeals process against the ruling with a notice of appeal earlier this month.
The administration urged the US Court of Appeals in Washington to review the September 27 ruling that halted the ban.
Before the ruling, the Commerce Department had said that TikTok downloads would be banned from September 20, and further restrictions aimed at making the app unusable would go into effect from November 12 unless a deal that satisfactorily addresses the administration's security concerns is reached.

--IANS na/