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Lights still on at KPNQwest

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The liquidators of bust KPNQwest are to keep the service running until the end of June, after striking a deal with unpaid, 'exhausted' volunteers manning the Brussels network centre Ebone, its European internet backbone operation.

The 100 or so staff who had been working round the clock for eight days had threatened to walk out at 4.45pm UK time today, rendering the network inoperative. But now, the liquidators have agreed to retain and pay 70 workers.

By some estimates, 25 per cent of European Internet traffic passes through Ebone, prompting much talk of an Internet meltdown in the event of KPNQwest's collapse. Other service providers say tosh and piffle. There's plenty of capacity. ®

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