Wednesday, March 5, 2008

A Rumor That Was Not Denied

Internet to be Blocked on Elections Day?

The rumor in Tehran these days is that on March 14, 2008 when Iranians go to polling ‎stations to cast their vote for the eight Majlis (Parliament), the Internet will be blocked ‎and thus not accessible in Tehran and other major cities across the country. But even ‎though this possibility still remains at the level of a rumor, the recent comments by the ‎Minister of the Interior, and the Political Deputy of Tehran Province, throw weight ‎behind the chitchat. Pour Mohammadi not only did not deny the rumors, he in fact ‎relegated the decision on this to the Telecommunications Company of Iran.‎

At a women’s seminar in Tehran, a reporter recently asked Pour Mohammadi whether the ‎rumor was right and that the “Ministry of the Interior had requested the Ministry of ‎Communications and Technology to block access to the Internet on March 14th. Without ‎denying the rumor or addressing the issue whether the Internet will be blocked or ‎otherwise, Mohammadi said, “Whether the Internet will be blocked on elections day ‎depends on the security plans of the Ministry of Communications and Technology.”‎

And while claiming ignorance as to how such news spread out he said, “Precautionary ‎measures will be implemented, as good ones have already been implemented and the ‎Ministry of Communications shall continue to be minutely monitoring the security of the ‎elections.”

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