MIT or Massachusetts Institute of Technology works with various startups around the world in the field of research based on different types of technology. Now, it is said that the institution has had to review one of its partnerships with a Chinese AI startup named SenseTime which was just listed by U.S. in its blacklist which means that no company based out of the US can work with SenseTime or other companies from the list.
Allegedly, SenseTime is one of the companies responsible for human rights abuses against Muslim minority groups in China. Now, we know that the MIT is currently reviewing its partnership but we believe that it will have to terminate their partnership because it is impossible for them to continue working with a company placed in the US entity list just like Google did with Huawei.
As per a statement from the spokesperson of MIT to Bloomberg, it was said that “MIT has long had a robust export controls function that pays careful attention to export control regulations and compliance. MIT will review all existing relationships with organizations added to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Entity List, and modify any interactions, as necessary.”
On the other hand, SenseTime’s representative told Bloomberg that “We are deeply disappointed with this decision by the U.S. Department of Commerce. We will work closely with all relevant authorities to fully understand and resolve the situation.”
As far as the reports about human rights violation are concerned, it is believed that as many as a million Uyghur Muslims have been kept in detention camps in China and human rights observers report that they have been subjected to forced labour and torture. It is also worth noting that SenseTime is said to have supplied software to the Chinese government for its national surveillance system, including CCTV cameras.