World Bulletin / News Desk
The European Union Thursday said telecom company Altice breached EU rules by prematurely taking over Portugal Telecom (PT) without full clearance from regulators.
Netherlands-listed Altice, which is owned by French-Israeli billionaire Patrick Drahi, said it "does not agree with the European Commission’s preliminary conclusions and will submit a full response... and contest all the objections."
Altice announced its planned purchase of the Portuguese company from Brazil's Oi in December 2014 for 7.4 billion euros.
It notified the EC, which oversees the bloc's competition rules, the following February, getting approval for the transaction in April 2015.
In its statement Thursday, the EC said Altice had "implemented the acquisition prior to the adoption of the Commission's clearance decision, and in some instances, prior to its notification."
It added Altice was in a "position to exercise decisive influence over PT Portugal before notification or clearance of the transaction".
Thursday's announcement will not affect regulatory approval granted for the transaction in April 2015, the Commission said.
Last week, Israeli authorities refused a request to release Attallah from prison
The move came as Israel extended detention of 16-year-old girl Ahed al-Tamimi
‘We do not have people operating in Afrin, so that does not have a direct effect on what we are doing’, spokesman says
Arguments in case expected in April, final ruling expected by June
Sergey Lavrov, Ayman Safadi meet in New York, according to Russian Foreign Ministry statement
Police confirm detention of Turks without providing reason for move
Congress fails to reach agreement on short-term stopgap funding
Xi's eponymous "thought" was already enshrined in the Communist Party constitution at the 19th Party Congress in October, elevating him to the same status as modern China's founder Mao Zedong.
Separate roadside bombings in both provinces left three civilians dead, say security sources
Mexico rejects claim, calling it 'manifestly false'
Supporters not deterred by president’s antics, performance
Republican leadership eyes Thursday vote on stopgap bill, but passage is uncertain without Democratic support
The head of the Venezuelan Supreme Court and the chief of the intelligence agency are also blacklisted, diplomatic sources said, making them subject to asset freezes and travel bans.
Army frequently carries out sweeping arrest campaigns in occupied West Bank, East Jerusalem
Icy roads contribute to at least 4 fatalities, fifth death attributed to exposure