Israel's Partner cuts ties with Orange after political spat

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Israel's Partner Communications has cut ties with French mobile phone giant Orange eight months after a public spat over politics.

In June, Orange CEO Stephane Richard stoked anger in Israel when he said he wanted to sever ties with local operator Partner as soon as possible in part to improve business in the Arab world. Orange faced international criticism because Partner operates transmission towers in Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

Richard later apologized for his comments and said he opposes boycotting Israel. Still, Orange reached a deal with Partner that would allow for an early termination of contract.

Partner launched a rebranding Tuesday, replacing its orange square logo with a turquoise box. CEO Isaac Benbenisti said it had "survived the storm" and was "a proud Israeli company."