08/01/2020 - 1:26
US President Donald Trump announced on Friday that he will ban the TikTok application in the United States, after the country's authorities expressed concern that this platform was used by Chinese intelligence.
Speaking to journalists on the Air Force One presidential plane, the White House leader said: "As far as TikTok is concerned, we are going to ban it in the United States."
He added that he would take the measure as soon as Saturday through a decree or by resorting to emergency economic power.
TikTok, a video application very popular with young people whose headquarters is ByteDance, based in China, has around a billion users worldwide .
The Wall Street Journal and the Bloomberg agency had earlier reported that Trump had ordered the sale of TikTok's US operations by ByteDance , estimating that the service could be used by Chinese intelligence.
Other reports, including one from Fox News, said Microsoft was in talks to acquire TikTok , the value of which could reach several tens of billions of dollars.
US officials and lawmakers have expressed concern in recent weeks about the possibility that TikTok may be used by China for espionage purposes , but the company has denied any ties to the Beijing government.
Asked by AFP, TikTok declined to comment on the press reports.
"We are confident in TikTok's long-term success. Hundreds of millions of people come to TikTok to entertain and connect, including our community of creators and artists," he said.
The platform this week promised a high level of transparency , including allowing revisions of its algorithms, to assure users and regulators that it is not used for any purpose other than entertainment.
"We are not politicians, we do not accept political publicity and we do not have a political agenda; our sole objective is to remain a dynamic platform for everyone to enjoy," TikTok CEO Kevin Mayer said in a post this week.
"TikTok has become the ultimate target, but we are not the enemy," he added.