Illegal migrant workers have disrupted the government telephone link between Moscow and Beijing by cutting a cable in the Kemerovo region, the local branch of the Federal Migration Service said Tuesday on its web site.
The unspecified company that employed the workers had paperwork confirming that it acted legally, but a check was opened to see whether the documents were falsified, the report said.
The migrants worked at night, extracting valuable metals from the cable, possibly to steal them, the agency said. The company faces administrative sanctions for employing illegal migrants, it said.
The Beijing cable was laid in the 1950s, becoming one of the first direct telephone links between Moscow and other world capitals.