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Trump orders ByteDance to divest interests in US Tik Tok operations within 90 days

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Washington | August 15, 2020 6:41:58 AM IST
US President Donald Trump has issued an executive order requiring China-based ByteDance to divest its interests in video-sharing app TikTok's operations in the US within 90 days, Sputnik reported.

"There is credible evidence that leads me to believe that ByteDance ... might take action that threatens to impair the national security of the United States," Trump said in the order.

The new order comes a week after an earlier executive order from Trump. The previous order could have forced US-based app stores to stop distributing the TikTok app if its parent ByteDance did not reach a deal to divest from it in 45 days.

The new order buys time for Byte Dance to sort out a potential deal for TikTok.

Under the latest order, ByteDance is expected to destroy all its copies of TikTok data attached to US users.

Earlier this month, US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo had said that the Trump administration is "working hard" to protect Americans from the threats of "untrusted vendors" such as Tik Tok and WeChat, which it wants to remove from US app stores like those operated by Apple and Google.

Also, US politicians have repeatedly criticised TikTok, owned by Beijing-based startup ByteDance, of being a threat to national security because of its ties to China.

China and the US are at loggerheads on a variety of issues including Hong Kong national security law, the South China Sea, the novel coronavirus and trade.

On August 3, Microsoft had announced its decision to pursue discussions with TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, in a matter of weeks, and in any event, completing these discussions no later than September 15. (ANI)

 
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