Internet gradually returns in Iraq after PM admitted authorities limited it

A random web of electric wires dangle above a market street in the Iraqi capital Baghdad's Bab Al-Seef neighbourhood. (AFP)

Internet access in Iraq is gradually returning, the Iraqi News Agency reported on Sunday, after authorities shut it down and blocked social media cites across the country during protests in October.

Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mahdi had acknowledged Saturday that the government has been blocking access to the internet.

Shortly after the statement’s release, internet on cellphones resumed for half an hour before being cut again.

Netblocks, a group that monitors worldwide internet access, reported a major shutdown by Iraqi authorities as of Monday, with usage in Baghdad and southern Iraq dropping to 19 percent of normal levels. It said the internet was partially restored early Tuesday, but that “some networks are still offline and social media and messaging apps remain blocked or degraded.”

Authorities shut down internet access and blocked social media sites several times during the protests in October, but Netblocks said the latest shutdown was the most severe yet.

- With AP

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 10:01 - GMT 07:01
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