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US Accuses China of Using TikTok to Expand Global Influence, Prepares to Vote for Measures to Block

The US Congress is preparing to vote on measures to block TikTok, amid concerns that the Chinese-owned social media app is being used by Beijing to expand its global influence. Wisconsin Republican Congressman Mike Gallagher, who chairs a new parliamentary committee tasked with investigating China, has urged for a separation of the US and Chinese economies and called for a ban on TikTok in the US or for ByteDance to sell TikTok to non-Chinese companies.

Gallagher’s remarks came as Michael McCall, a Republican member of the House of Representatives from Texas who is the chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, revealed that the committee will discuss and vote on measures against TikTok today (February 28). McCall warned that an attempt to ban TikTok would pose a challenge to the issue of freedom of speech.

TikTok has come under increased scrutiny in recent years due to its Chinese ownership, with some US politicians and security experts arguing that the app poses a national security risk. TikTok has repeatedly denied these allegations and has taken steps to distance itself from its Chinese roots, such as appointing a US-based CEO and creating a transparency center in the US.

However, concerns persist, and the US government has taken steps to limit TikTok’s influence in the country. In 2020, former President Donald Trump issued an executive order that would have banned TikTok in the US unless it was sold to a US-based company, citing national security concerns. The order was later blocked by a federal judge.

The debate over TikTok highlights the growing tension between the US and China and the challenges of doing business across borders in an increasingly interconnected world. As the US Congress prepares to vote on measures to block TikTok, the issue of how to balance national security concerns with freedom of speech and economic interests will continue to be a topic of heated debate.

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