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TeliaSonera pulls out of Azerbaijan
Author: Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), Published on: 9 October 2015
TeliaSonera, the Swedish telecoms giant which has been linked by investigations to alleged multi-million dollar corruption in Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan, has announced that it is leaving the Eurasian market...[T]he company claims...[i]t...sought to focus more on developing its operations in European countries...However, TeliaSonera's recent history in Eurasia hinted at a different reason...[J]ournalists...found that the company had helped the family of Azeri President Ilham Aliyev take over his country's stake in telecom firm Azercell...In exchange, TeliaSonera received all necessary permits to operate in Azerbaijan, as well as preferential treatment. In the case of Uzbekistan, OCCRP reported that TeliaSonera bribed Gulnara Karimova, the eldest daughter of the President, with more than one billion dollars to obtain permissions to operate in the country.