MTN faces 2021 US court date for allegedly assisting Taliban terrorism in Afghanista



By An Wentzel• 25 October 2020

SA’s largest cellphone company has long prided itself on being able to operate in some of the toughest environments in the world, but that facility is being tested as never before in a US court case brought by family members of US soldiers who were killed by the Taliban.

First published in Daily Maverick 168

It’s a fascinating and complicated case, which MTN hotly disputes, but the public relations fallout is forcing the company to rethink its operations in countries where angels fear to tread.

The company is facing claims that its Afghanistan operations switched off the cellphone network at the behest of the Taliban and that it paid protection money for its operations not to be attacked.

The company also faces enormous financial losses if the case is lost, but it has some seemingly strong legal arguments on its side too.

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