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KT and SK Telecom continue Olympics row

Dec 27,2017
A brawl broke out between KT and SK Telecom over the telecommunications infrastructure near the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games venues in Gangwon.

KT urged SK Telecom to remove optical fiber cables that were disturbing KT’s relay network for the Olympic Games in a statement Tuesday. KT is the official network for the games.

KT had already sued Korea’s largest mobile carrier earlier this month after SK Telecom damaged KT’s underground cable ducts near Pyeongchang’s International Broadcasting Center, a temporary hub for broadcasting during the international sporting event.

SK Telecom restored KT’s cable ducts and removed its cables to settle the issue. KT came up with two other locations where SK Telecom damaged KT’s network infrastructure to set up its own cables. The controversial cables are set up near ski jumps in the Alpensia Resort in Gangwon.

“SK Telecom agreed to remove the cables as soon as possible in an agreement on Dec. 18, however there hasn’t been any progress,” a KT spokesperson said. “We ask SK Telecom to stop infringing KT’s rights and its infrastructure so KT can successfully support a telecommunications network for the upcoming Olympic Games.”

KT says it spent tens of billions of won and SK Telecom tried to take advantage of its cable ducts.

SK Telecom was taken aback by KT’s release Tuesday.

“On Dec. 18 both carriers agreed on SK Telecom removing the controversial cables by this Friday,” a spokesperson for SK Telecom said. “It is baffling why KT had to release another statement on the issue before the deadline has been met.”

According to SK Telecom, KT initially requested the removal to be completed by Sunday, and then agreed to a Friday deadline.

“We will make sure our cables are removed,” the SK Telecom spokesperson said.

BY KIM JEE-HEE [kim.jeehee@joongang.co.kr]