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European court finds for CTU in Cesky dispute

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled this week that Czechoslovakia’s regulator, the Czech Telecoms Office (CTU) was correct to order the country’s dominant operator Cesky Telecom to open its lines to its rival Czech OnLine to provide broadband connectivity.

The advocate general at the ECJ, Damaso Ruiz-Jarabo Colomer, said there was no question that the CTU had the right to order Cesky, now Telefonica O2, to open its lines to Czech OnLine in early May 2004, after Czech accession to the EU.

After it took over Cesky, Telefonica O2 filed a lawsuit against the regulator arguing that it had violated two European directives. However, Colomer disagreed saying the directives had not been part of Czech law at the time.

The Czech court suspended the trial pending the ECJ’s verdict.

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