San Francisco, Sep 23 (efe-epa).- The Chinese owner of TikTok filed for a preliminary injunction Wednesday to prevent United States president Donald Trump from enforcing a ban this weekend over national security concerns.
ByteDance filed the request with federal judge Carl Nichols of Washington DC, alleging that the move would violate free speech and due process.
Nichols set a hearing for Thursday morning.
In the documentation presented to the judge, the firm asked that the issue be resolved before midnight Sunday, the new deadline for the ban after the extension last weekend.
Trump had already preliminarily approved the agreement reached between ByteDance and the American companies Oracle and Walmart.
If the judge does not agree to the injunction and there is nothing new between Wednesday and Sunday, Google and Apple, which control the two main app stores, would be forced to withdraw TikTok in the US in compliance with the president’s executive order.
On Monday, Trump threatened not to approve the agreement reached between the American and Chinese parties if the US companies do not have “total control” over the resulting partnership, despite having previously given his “blessing.”
The parties to the agreement have offered contradictory versions in recent days about whether ByteDance would continue to be a main part of the shareholding of the new company, created to manage the TikTok business in the US.
According to Oracle and Walmart – which will control 20 percent of the future firm – most of the new company will be US-owned, but according to ByteDance, it will control the remaining 80 percent until its IPO is launched in about a year.
The version of the deal offered by ByteDance, therefore, would not meet the conditions of the executive order issued by Trump on Aug. 14, which forced the operation by requiring the Chinese company to sell its business in the US or stop operating in the country.
Chinese state media said this week that Beijing will not accept an unequal pact that targets Chinese companies.
An editorial in the state Global Times said that according to the information provided by the US, the deal is “unfair” and “caters to the unreasonable demands of Washington.” EFE-EPA