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January 29, 2011
When Will Egypt Get Back Internet Service?
Egypt’s Internet disruption shows no sign of ending and has been down for more than a day. Starting at around 2p.m P.T., the mostly state-owned Telecom Egypt brought down its networks followed shortly after by four smaller network providers.
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak appeared on state television stating: “I will not be lax or tolerant.” “There’s a fine line, between permitting free speech and allowing chaos to spread” . This can only mean that until the unrest has eased internet service will not be restored. Mobile phone interruption soon followed the internet service disruption.
The disruptions come as four days of clashes between security forces and thousands of protesters continued on the streets of Cairo and other major cities. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a speech earlier today that “we urge the Egyptian authorities to allow peaceful protests and to reverse the unprecedented steps it has taken to cut off communications.”
“We think the government, as many of us have said throughout the day, need to turn the Internet and social-networking sites back on,” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said. He added: “Individual freedoms include the freedom to access the Internet and the freedom to–to use social-networking sites.”