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MTS Faces License Problem

ALMATY — Authorities in Uzbekistan say they will suspend the operating license of a Russian-owned mobile communications company for 10 days after a series of technical violations.

The suspension, which was due to take effect Tuesday evening, spells more problems for the subsidiary of mobile operator MTS in the tightly controlled Central Asian nation.

Officials last month admonished the locally registered owner of the MTS-Uzbekistan brand, Uzdunrobita, for poor service and using cell phone towers without proper authorization.

MTS-Uzbekistan's licensing woes come as prosecutors are reportedly filing criminal cases against company officials on charges of fraud.

Numerous foreign investors have over recent years reported harassment by state bodies and seizure of assets by business interests close to the ruling elite.

(AP)

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