Shortly after AT&T damned the proposed $20 billion merger between BT and MCI, the US Baby Bells want US authorities to let them offer long distance services if the merger is sanctioned.
Last week AT&T delivered a 31-page document to the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) - the authority investigating the merger - urging equal competition and demanding assurances that BT/MCI will not discriminate when dealing with competitors.
The four regional Baby Bells say that, if regulators approve the merger, they should look favourably on Bell requests for permission to offer long distance services.
A BT spokesperson said: ?They always use every legal and regulatory angle to block competition.?
Europe?s two largest telecomms operators, Deutsche Telekom and France Telecom, have also insisted the FCC should set regulatory safeguards to keep BT from exploiting its dominant position in the UK.
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