Telecom: Orange says Guinean network suffered cuts without warning

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DAKAR: French telecoms operator Orange said its subsidiary in Guinea had suffered cuts in outgoing international communications links in the past 72 hours, without prior warning.
Orange said the disruption of service at Guilab, a telecommunications infrastructure company that manages the West African nation’s connection to a high-speed submarine communications cable, affected voice calls, l roaming and Internet services.Internet and phone calls were severely disrupted in Guinea after preliminary results of the hotly contested October 18 presidential election showed incumbent President Alpha Condé won a contested third term, sparking violent unrest. At least 20 people have been killed since the vote.

The Guinean government, which holds a majority stake in Guilab, has cut internet access in the past during times of unrest.

A government spokesperson could not be reached for comment.

Orange said in a statement Sunday evening that international voice calls and roaming services were restored on Saturday evening.

He said he was surprised that the cuts only affected Orange’s ties. The company has not received any notification of non-compliance with its obligations or violation of Guinean laws, she said.

Orange is one of the main telecoms operators in the Guinean mobile telecoms market, which also includes MTN and Cellcom in South Africa.



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