MOSCOW, March 29 - RAPSI. Turkcell, the top Turkish mobile communications provider, has filed a lawsuit with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia against MTN, South Africa's mobile communications provider, on the violation of its international rights while receiving a mobile services license in Iran.

Alfa Group is a Turkcell shareholder.

In 2004, Turkcell won an international tender for its first license to provide private GSM services in Iran. Eventually, the Iranian authorities prohibited the company from working in the sphere and entered into an agreement with MTN.

"The information, which Turkcell recently received, states that a license agreement was signed with MTN instead of Turkcell following actions by MTN. Due to the harm that MTN inflicted upon Turkcell and its shareholders, Turkcell filed a lawsuit against MTN seeking compensation for these losses," Turkcell said in a press release.

The company noted that it earlier held talks with MTN on settling the issue, but the South African party halted the discussions in March.

Turkcell is Turkey's leading mobile communications provider with 34.4 million subscribers. Russias Alfa Group indirectly holds 13.22 percent of the company's shares.