September 27, 2022

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In Iran, a crackdown behind closed doors

“The mobile network and internet were disconnected for most of the day. Whichever region of Iran you hear the least voices from, know that the clashes between the people and the security forces are the most intense. » An Iranian activist’s call for help, launched on social media on Thursday, September 22, sums up the anxiety in the country, now that phone networks and the Internet are blocked by authorities. In the evening, demonstrations and clashes resumed, amid firing by security forces and attacks on protesting neighborhoods. Even in apartment buildings.

In the morning, protesters in Tehran and other Iranian cities set fire to police stations and vehicles, and a young Iranian woman named Mahsa Amini was arrested by a police nun for wearing a veil and died in police custody. Don’t want to be quiet. A week after his death, authorities So they have tightened their internet censorshipBlocking many of the few western services still accessible in the country.

Read the story: The article is reserved for our subscribers In Iran, anger grows after the death of Mahza Amini, who became a symbol of the regime’s brutality.

According to Netblock, a firm that specializes in monitoring sanctions, the country is now under strict restrictions after a bloody crackdown on protests in November 2019, which left hundreds dead. Netblock has noted the implementation of new restrictions, specifically targeting Instagram and WhatsApp apps, whose access has now been hit hard in the country. Significant outages also affected the networks of major mobile phone operators, and localized cuts in internet access were seen, particularly in Sanandaj, the capital of the Iranian province of Kurdistan, and in Tehran during the protests.

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Audit circuit

Before the protests began, Iran was already one of the countries that restricted internet access. Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have been inaccessible there for years – some regime officials, including Ayatollah Khamenei, There are accounts on Twitter. Telegraphic transmission is also prohibited there. The main social network used in the country, until this week, Instagram, was tolerated by the government.

After years of sanctions, Iranians have become accustomed to turning to virtual private networks, censorship tools that allow access to apps and sites blocked by service providers on the Internet. Several Instagram accounts have broadcast images of demonstrations and police violence captured by witnesses in recent days.

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