Seven years ago, in my role as CEO of a mobile operator in Turkey, I saw firsthand the plight of millions of Syrians who came across the border to find safety. What I observed was that for those refugees, one of their greatest needs was communications. They needed to talk with relatives and tell them they were safe or to find friends and family. Since that time, I believe refugees’ need for connectivity has become even greater, as many rely on the mobile internet to access health services and manage their finances.

The importance of communications fell under the global spotlight in May when the United Nations celebrated World Telecommunication and Information Society Day. On this day, we honor what communications brings to the functioning of societies and recognize digital inequalities among and within countries. Across governments and international institutions, it is important that everyone understands the role communications companies can play in providing humanitarian support in times of crisis…

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