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    Telecom firms warned over unregistered SIMs

     KABUL (PAN): The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) on Tuesday warned mobile service providers of cash fines and cancellation of licences if they failed to block unregistered SIM cards.

    A statement from the ministry said all companies were obliged under the country's telecommunication regulatory procedures to ban the sale of unregistered SIM cards. It added the firms were bound to abide by the agreements they had inked with ATRA and security departments.

    ATRA deputy head Eng. Khair Mohammad Faizi told reporters in Kabul telecom companies should respect his department's rules and regulations, insisting unregistered SIM cards had been a source of insecurity.

    Faizi said security organs faced problems while chasing and identifying criminals who used unregistered SIM cards. He added the companies had been issued notices, but they were yet to take the required measures.

    He claimed an ATRA team, escorted by security officials, had seized 252 unregistered SIM cards of Roshan from vendors in Pul-i-Khishti neighbourhood.

    The team also confiscated 114 SIMs of Etisalat and 141 of MTN, sealing three shops and arresting six vendors, according to the ATRA official, who warned the companies of canceling their licences if they failed to block unregistered SIMs in the next few days.