Justice Department says WeChat users won’t be penalized under Trump’s executive order – ClearTips
In a petition filed in the Federal Court on Wednesday, the United States government said that users who use or download WeChat “To express personal or business information” would not be subject to penalties under President Donald Trump’s executive order banning transactions with Tencent-owned messaging apps.
Trump issued an executive order against WeChat on August 6, the same day he issued a similar restrictive transaction with Ticketok’s parent company ByteDance, claiming national security concerns. Both orders caused confusion as they are set to go into effect 45 days after they were issued, but said Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross would not identify what transactions were involved until then.
With the expiration of this time now this weekend, WeChat users in the US are still uncertain about the future of the app. Although WeChat is by far the top messaging app in China, where it also serves as an essential drain for payments and other services, the US version of the app has relatively limited features. It is used by Chinese-Americans, and by other members of Chinese dislike in America to keep in touch with their family and others in China. With other popular messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp banned in China, WeChat is often the most direct communication channel available to them.
The US government filings (embedded below) were done as part of a preliminary injunction request against an executive order brought by the US WeChat Users Alliance, a non-profit organization started by lawyers who were users Want to preserve access to WeChat. The US A hearing is scheduled for Thursday.
In it, Department of Justice lawyers said that the US Department of Commerce is continuing to review the transaction and will clarify which are affected from September 20, but “we can assure that [Secretary Ross] Does not intend to take actions that would target individuals or groups whose sole connection to WeChat is to use personal or business information between users to use them or download the app, or otherwise define related transactions in such a way Which will apply to a criminal or a civilian. Liability on such users. “
But in a response (also embedded below), the US WeChat Users Alliance stated that instead of filing the Department of Justice demonstrates why an initial injunction is necessary. “Having failed to articulate any genuine national security concerns, the administration’s latest ‘assurances’ that users can use WeChat, and exchange their personal and business information, are only forwarded to defendants Shows the hollowness and pre-textual nature of national security. Rasnals. ‘”
On August 21, the US WeChat Users Alliance filed for injunction. In an open letter published on its site, it said that WeChat’s complete ban would “severely affect the lives of millions of Americans and would be a difficult task for them.” Time to talk with family relatives and friends in China. Countless people or businesses who use WeChat to develop and contact customers will also suffer significant economic losses. “
The group also believes the executive order “violates several provisions of the US Constitution,” and the Administrative Procedure Act.