Facebook delivered a harsh blow to Chinese tech giant Huawei on Friday. Image: AFP

Facebook said Friday that it would stop allowing pre-installation of its social networking apps on Huawei devices to comply with American sanctions against the Chinese telecommunications giant.

The social media behemoth said it took the step after US President Donald Trump barred Huawei from American technology exports over concerns that it works with Chinese intelligence.

“We are reviewing the Commerce Department’s final rule and the more recently issued temporary general license and taking steps to ensure compliance,” a Facebook spokesperson told AFP.

The California company said people with existing Huawei smartphones with Facebook apps will continue to be able to use and download app updates provided by Facebook.

The move by Facebook is the latest to isolate Huawei, which had become the world’s second-largest smartphone vendor despite Washington’s security concerns.

Google last month said it would cut ties to Huawei, making it more difficult to obtain major apps from the American giant.

The Google decision would leave Huawei without the Play Store, the marketplace for most Android apps, and other elements of the mobile operating system.

Facebook, which is banned in China but has more than two billion users worldwide, said its decision would affect its core social network as well as applications such as Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp, which each have at least one billion users.

– with reporting by AFP

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