Iran in ‘near-total national internet shutdown’ amid ongoing protests

Iranian protesters gather around a fire during a demonstration against an increase in gasoline prices in the capital Tehran. (AFP)

Iran has almost completely shut off access to the internet across the country as protests over an increase in fuel prices intensified for the second day, cybersecurity NGO Netblocks confirmed in a report.

“Iran is in the midst of a near-total national internet shutdown as of 18:45 UTC, Saturday. Real-time network data show connectivity has fallen to just 7% of ordinary levels following twelve hours of progressive network disconnections as public protests have continued across the country,” Netblocks said.

“With #IranProtests ongoing, this almost complete internet shutdown is #Iran’s most significant network disruption since Rouhani came to office in 2013,” Small Media, a London-based non-profit that works to increase the flow of information in closed societies across the Middle East and Africa, said in a tweet.

Iranian authorities first began disrupting internet access across multiple cities, including Tehran, late on Friday when widespread protests over fuel rationing and price hikes of more than 50 percent began to take place.

The death toll as of Saturday in Iran from protests over gasoline rationing and price hikes of at least 50 percent has risen to 12, Al Arabiya sources confirmed.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 14:05 - GMT 11:05
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