Iran shuts down Telegram app as protests intensify
As reports on widespread protests in Iran spread rapidly, Iranian authorities responded by cutting internet access to mobile phones, with the main networks interrupted at least in Tehran shortly before midnight, AFP reporters said.
According to the ISNA news agency, Iranian authorities temporarily block Instagram, messaging app Telegram to “maintain peace’ amid protests.”
Tehran residents also reported that internet connections in the capital has been downed by the authorities.
Pavel Durov, the founder of the Telegram Messenger tweeted today: “Iranian authorities are blocking access to Telegram for the majority of Iranians after out public refusal to shut down t.me/sedaiemardom and other peacefully protesting channels.”
To prevent spreading peaceful protests across the country, some Iranian officials also called for censorship of the Internet.
Tehran’s temporary Friday prayer leader, Mohammad Ali Movahedi Kermani in a part of his Friday prayer sermon called for blocking the internet.
“The enemy wants once again to create a new plot and use social media and economic issues to foment a new sedition,” Ayatollah Mohsen Araki, a prominent cleric, told a crowd in Tehran, according to the state-run Fars news agency.