A judge in the United States blocked a ban from the US Department of Commerce on Sunday. This allows Apple and Google to continue to offer the WeChat app via the App Store and Play Store.
President Donald Trump’s administration wants to ban the Chinese apps TikTok and WeChat, because these apps could endanger national security, according to Trump. The ban was due to take effect on September 20. After this, Google and Apple should no longer offer the apps in the American app stores.
WeChat users took to court to challenge the ban and were proved right. According to Judge Laurel Beeler of California, the ban violates the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, and so the US Department of Commerce is not allowed to go through with the ban.
The Ministry of Justice has asked the judge not to block the ban, but according to the judge the right to communicate freely is more important in this case. The ban on WeChat would ban an important means of communication for a large group of Americans; in particular, the Chinese American community in the country makes extensive use of WeChat.
TikTok owner ByteDance has also avoided a ban on its app by closing a deal with Walmart and Oracle. Because TikTok is now largely owned by American companies and the data of users is processed in the US, the app may remain available to Americans of the government.