In Pakistan, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube are currently “accessible.”

In Pakistan, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube are currently "accessible."

After the arrest of PTI Chairman Imran Khan on May 9 provoked violent protests, PTA shut down social media platforms.

According to sources within the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), the government on Monday began to resume nationwide service for Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook after having suspended them for nearly a week.

After violent protests broke out across the nation on May 9 when Rangers officers detained Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan from the Islamabad High Court (IHC), acting on a warrant from the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), the regulatory authority had suspended mobile broadband and restricted access to Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.

During the days-long protests, at least 10 people died and numerous others were injured.

According to the interior ministry’s guidelines, the internet services were shut down for the longest period of time in a nation that frequently shuts down communications to calm unrest.

According to sources, the telecom operators’ revenue has decreased by approximately Rs820 million as a result of the internet suspension, which has had a significant negative impact on the industry given the precarious status of the economy.

Aside from that, the government had also blocked popular social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, and YouTube services took longer to rein in the dissemination of misinformation and public fear brought on by “unwanted information.”

Amnesty International voices concerns

Amnesty International called on Pakistani authorities to remove limitations on internet access on May 12.

Amnesty International’s South Asian campaigner, Rimmel Mohydin, stated: “There is an urgent need to de-escalate the situation in Pakistan as it threatens further severe violations of the people’s rights and risks more fatalities.”

She continued by pleading with officials to refrain from using more force than is necessary and proportional. “The authorities should be aiming to defuse the situation,” she said. Amnesty International implores the Pakistani government to exhibit patience and employ minimal force rather than using weapons to disperse protests.

She argued that the government’s announcement that the mobile internet shutdown is “indefinite” is alarming and clearly violates people’s rights to information access and free speech.

Mohydin emphasized that “the restrictions must be lifted immediately” and added that “the ban on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube also creates a permissive environment for other human rights violations under the darkness of the internet shutdown.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *