Elon Musk has the green light to activate Internet Starlink for Iranians | New protests
The US government’s legal directives on the expansion of Internet services to Iranians have been modified despite American sanctions against the country.
The CEO of SpaceX, Elon Musk, received the green light from the US government to activate the Internet service by Satellite Starlink to help Iranians protest against the death of a woman in police custody.
Access to social media and certain content is strictly limited in Iran and important internet failures have been reported throughout the country on Saturday, with one of the largest interrupted mobile operators, leaving millions of Iranians offline.
The US Treasury Department published directives on Friday expanding Internet services available for Iranians despite American sanctions against the country.
This decision follows deadly demonstrations in Iran following the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22 -year -old woman who died after being detained by the “Police of Manners” who questioned the way she wore her scarf.
Hundreds of angry demonstrators were arrested and crowds went down to the streets of the big cities of Iran for eight consecutive nights. State television said that the number of deaths in “recent riots” had increased to 35, against 17 before, including at least five members of security staff.
We have taken measures today to advance the freedom of the Internet and the free movement of information for the Iranian people, by issuing a general license to provide them with better access to digital communications in order to counter the government’s censorship Iranian.
– Secretary Antony Blinken (@secblinken) September 23, 2022
A spokesperson for the US State Department said that the update license was self-executable and that “anyone who meets the criteria set out in this general license can continue their activities without requesting additional authorizations”.
Musk could not be attached to comments or clarifications concerning the authorization of Starlink to operate in Iran.
However, he said on Monday that the company wanted to provide the High Satellite Starlink Satellite service – already provided to Ukraine for its fight against the Russian invasion – to the Iranians and would ask for an exception to the sanctions.
Iran has limited access to Instagram and WhatsApp social media networks in the middle of the demonstrations, according to the inhabitants and the Internet watchdog Netblocks.
Azadeh Akbari, of the University of Twente, said that the digital closure in Iran is “the continuation of decades of internet filtering by the Iranian government”.
She gave examples of “keyboard filtering” and arrest of journalists as a means of suppressing access.
Akbari added that with the closure of the world cyberspace in Iran, it would be more and more “difficult and dangerous” for public members to access secure messaging applications and to use methods to bypass blockages.
Expressing from Capetown, South Africa, the editor of mobile video journalism Yusuf Omar said that Iranian government attempts to limit internet access are a form of “government censorship” as well as “self -censorship” Population.
“The people we contact with stories even if they have internet access for a few hours and want to send a video. They are really afraid,” Omar told Al Jazeera.
President Ebrahim Raisi said on Saturday that Iran was to “decisively deal with those who oppose the security and tranquility of the country,” Iranian state media reported.
Raisi’s comments were made during a telephone call to condolence to the family of a security agent stabbed to death last week, allegedly by protesters enraged by the death of Amini.