Ship dispatched to fix severed internet cables off west Africa.

FILE PHOTO: The Léon Thévenin near Buitenratel, Belgium. Photo: Hans Hillewaert/CC BY-SA 4.0
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Fiber optic cables in an underwater canyon have been damaged, causing slow internet connections in parts of Africa. Telecom companies have stated that a special vessel is scheduled to repair the cables next month. The damaged cables are part of the West Africa cable system, which spans 16,000 kilometers along the seabed from Europe to southern Africa. The vessel responsible for the repairs, the Leon Thevenin, is currently anchored in Cape Town and is equipped to operate in extreme conditions and shallow or deep water. South African networks are currently experiencing disruptions due to the damaged cables, and repairs are expected to be completed in September, according to Anne-Caroline Tanguy, a spokesperson for Cloudflare Inc., a company that provides load balancing and analytics. The timeline for completing the repairs will depend on factors such as weather conditions, according to Mooketsi Mocumi, a spokesperson for Telkom SA SOC.

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