Iraq’s industry regulator, the Communications and Media Commission (CMC), is working on reconnecting three million unlicensed mobile numbers issued by Zain Iraq.

In February 2011 the CMC fined the Kuwaiti-owned mobile operator $262m for issuing five million unlicensed sim cards. Zain has since refused to pay the fine.

“The fine still stands. There are still issues, but we are working on a solution to the problem,” says commissioner Ahmed Alomary. Since April, the CMC has reconnected two million numbers.

According to the CMC, no operator has the right to activate or market any new numbers without prior consent from the regulator.

“We will continue to appeal the fine,” says Jack Hakimian, Zain Group’s strategy director.