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Blocking of Broadcom-Qualcomm Tie-up Highlights 5G Security Fears

The unusual move by President Donald Trump blocking a proposed takeover of Qualcomm by Singapore-based chip rival Broadcom highlights growing concerns about the rise of Chinese competitors in the telecom sector and related national security issues.

Trump issued an order Monday barring the proposed $117 billion acquisition, citing credible evidence such a deal "threatens to impair the national security of the United States."

Trump's order made no mention of China, but an earlier letter from the US Treasury warned that a takeover might hurt US leadership in 5G, or fifth-generation wireless networks now being deployed, and consequently pose a threat to US security.

"It's a real threat," said James Lewis, a former US national security official who is now vice president at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.

"Every administration since 2002 has figured out we are vulnerable to Chinese espionage if they control the infrastructure. Qualcomm and...(continued)

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