[reuters] Wataniya Palestine launched its mobile phone service in the West Bank on Sunday even though Israel has yet to release the full range of frequencies agreed upon for the network, Palestinian officials said.
Mohammad Mustafa, head of the Wataniya Palestine board, said the company had begun functioning with a frequency range of 3.8 MHz, less than the 4.8 MHz Israel had agreed to open under an agreement with the Palestinian Authority signed last year.
"They will give us the additional 1 MHz as soon as possible," Mustafa told Reuters, adding that Tony Blair, envoy for the international Quartet of Middle East peace mediators, had promised the company it would acquire the remaining frequency.
A statement from Blair's office said he welcomed the launch of Wataniya and had received assurances from Israel that the remaining frequencies would be released.
Wataniya Palestine launches West Bank network