Long-range communications beacons silenced.Several critical stations in the long-range communications relay network were destroyed today, disabling communications with vessels currently exploring deep space. Beginning at approximately 12:20 PM GST, relay stations began shutting down unexpectedly, causing internal transmissions to be disrupted. External transmissions were unaffected due to a redundancy layer built into the remaining relay stations. At approximately 12:30 PM GST, the beacons' power cores began to simultaneously overload. This caused a massive short in the electrical systems of each beacon, and within minutes, total destruction.
One station technician managed to transmit a plea for help before being destroyed, but it is unknown if him or any other technicians survived. It is believed that the electrical short may have caused the escape pods to malfunction, but this hypothesis cannot be confirmed until escape pods are detected within range of local space.
"The working theory at this time is that they were targeted by members of the Confederation of Terran Nations," said the lead investigator, Detective Larry Wright. This marks the third recent act of violence committed by the CTN, previously thought to be defunct, as well as the second act of interference with the communications network's regular operating protocols.
Although a technician with the Intergalactic Communication Authority could not be reached, Spokesperson Carolyn Rae stated, "It took years to establish the current long-range communication network. At this time, we have no estimate on how long it will take to construct and deploy new beacons. Frankly, we don't even know if they would be destroyed as soon as they were replaced at this point."
The Intergalactic Communication Authority is a corporation that produces and maintains the satellites necessary for communication both in known space and unknown space, the result of a merger between Galacticomm and Astral Transmissions in 2349.
The Confederation of Terran Nations, the alliance from which the current three alliances sprang forth, was thought to be totally dissolved after a war precipitated by the first incident with the Praelor. The CTN starship fired the first shots at the Praelor ship, an action which is widely regarded as the cause of the current conflict between the alliances and the Praelor.
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