The US government on Thursday appealed a court ruling that suspended the ban of Chinese owned viral video-sharing app TikTok.
The appeal, which was submitted to the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, followed a Thursday filing by lawyer Jeffrey Lovitky in support of TikTok’s parent ByteDance, which asked the judge to permanently stop President Donald Trump’s ban on the app. The ban is presently set to go into effect on November 12.
US District Judge Carl Nichols granted a preliminary injunction against the ban on September 27 that would have forbidden all new downloads of the app in the US.
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Nichols said the administration likely overstepped its authority to invoke the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA), a national declaration triggered by unusual and extraordinary threats to the country. Nichols also said the administration likely violated First Amendment free speech protections.
Trump signed an executive order on August 6 saying TikTok and WeChat, a Chinese-owned messaging app owned by Tencent, were national security threats because the companies could be required to turn over users’ personal data to Beijing.
Both have denied the claim. The executive order set in motion the proposed bans that would take effect in two phases.
ByteDance sued Trump, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and the Commerce Department on August 24, saying the US offered insufficient evidence to support the security threat claim, and asked the judge to stay the phase one ban.
After the judge’s ruling to put the ban on hold, the Commerce Department defended Trump’s executive order to ban TikTok, saying that while it would comply with the court order for a delay, it intends to “vigorously defend” the order.
“The [executive order] is fully consistent with the law and promotes legitimate national security interests,” the Commerce Department said in a statement.
More from South China Morning Post:
- TikTok, WeChat bans by US and India broke WTO rules, China says
- Global Impact newsletter: TikTok’s clock is ticking in the US
- TikTok deal ‘likely to slip past US election’ as Donald Trump battles coronavirus
- TikTok will ask judge to stop broader US ban scheduled for next month
This article US government appeals TikTok ruling that suspended Donald Trump’s ban on the app first appeared on South China Morning Post