FCC approves Ligado 5G network over Pentagon objections

Defense Department say plan would 'needlessly imperil DoD GPS-dependent national security capabilities'

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The five-member Federal Communications Commission has unanimously voted to approve an order to allow Ligado Networks to deploy a low-power nationwide 5G network despite objections from the U.S. Defense Department, other federal agencies and major U.S. airlines.

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The telecommunications regulator said Monday the approval order included stringent conditions aimed at ensuring global positioning systems would not experience harmful interference. Defense Secretary Mark Esper wrote on Twitter Friday that the "Ligado proposal would needlessly imperil (Defense Department) GPS-dependent national security capabilities."

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(Reporting by David Shepardson)