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Comstar of Russia Rejects Buying Greece's Hellas On Line

OAO Comstar United Telesystems, Russian billionaire Vladimir Yevtushenkov's telecommunications company, said it will not buy 51 percent of Greece's Hellas On Line SA as it wants to concentrate on Russia and other markets in the former Soviet countries.

``We have adjusted our strategy and are shifting the focus to Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States,'' Comstar spokesman Stanislav Fedulov said in a telephone interview today from Moscow, where the company is based.

Comstar said Dec. 4 that it reached an agreement with Intracom Holdings SA (INTRK) to buy 51 percent of Hellas, Greece's first Internet-service provider and one of the largest fixed-line operators in the country, for 47.9 million euros ($65.3 million).

The transaction was subject to approval from the Greek regulatory authorities by June 30 this year. Comstar did not get the approval, Fedulov said.

Comstar has more than 3.6 million fixed-line phone subscribers in Moscow.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lyubov Pronina in Moscow at;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lars Klemming at

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