Friday, January 28, 2011

Syria blocked Internet to silence dissenting voices.

Internet Reportedly Down in Syria

SyriaOn the same day that Egypt has allegedly blocked the Internet, Syria may have made a similar move to silence dissenting voices.
According to Arabic-language website Al Arabiya, the country has suspended all of its Internet services.
Earlier this week, Reuters reported that Syria had imposed bans on two programs that allow access to Facebook, which had previously been banned in 2007.
The country has a history of restricting media coverage of poverty and corruption, but it’s not clear that it has gone as far as disrupting Internet service altogether. Shorty after Al Arabiya reported that the Internet was down in Syria, a government representative denied the claim. Many who said they were tweeting from Syria alsocommented that they weren’t having any problems accessing the Internet.
Reports from Egypt, on the other hand, confirm that the government blocked Twitter and then Internet access altogether in response to escalating protests against the regime of President Hosni Mubarak.
Hillary Clinton addressed the rise of Internet censorship in a speech last week, calling it the “new information curtain.” But Egypt and — if the report is true, Syria — are the first countries to push censorship to the point ofcompletely shutting down the Internet.
Image courtesy of iStockphotoselensergen

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