Iraq: Internet shut down in central and southern rights including the capital Baghdad


Reliable reports confirmed that the Iraqi government decided on 14 July 2018 to shut down the Internet across the country’s central and southern regions, including the capital Baghdad, in an attempt to stop the spread of updated news related to ongoing protests.  

Demonstrations started in Basra and move quickly to other cities, particularly after the security forces responded to a peaceful demonstration in the city of Basra on 08 July 2018 with live bullets, killing protestor Asaad Al-Mansouri and wounding three other demonstrators.

Demonstrators have protested the spread of corruption in the state departments, the lack of job opportunities for Iraqi youth (particularly in the oil industry), the continuous and unavoidable electrical power cuts, in addition to the lack of drinking water, and other poor services.

An image shown above which is obtained from ( marked Iraq as red colored which confirms the full shutdown of the Internet in the country on 14 and 15 July. According to some reports, Internet service resumed just before midnight on 15 July.

The Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR) condemns the shutdown of the Internet in Iraq and regards it as a direct threat to freedom of expression online. Also, it repeats the call to authorities to protect peaceful protesters and respect their rights to freedom of assembly.