Sudan Court Orders End to Internet Blackout

A Sudanese court ordered the country’s three main telecommunications providers to restore internet access, as the country entered its sixteenth day of an internet blackout following a coup by military leaders on Oct. 25.

While some Sudanese users have managed to find a connection, the online blackout has made it difficult for most people to communicate, particularly with those outside the country.

A judge ordered Zain (ZAIN.KW), MTN (MTNJ.J) and local provider Sudani to restore internet services immediately, according to lawyer Abdelazim Hassan, who raised a complaint on behalf of the Sudanese Consumer Protection Society.

About eight hours after the court order, there was no sign of internet services returning.

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A spokesman for the Coordinating Committee for Refugees and Displaced People, Adam Rojal said the blackout has meant further impunity for attacks in Darfur, which records attacks in the region.

At least four people have been killed in more than 10 militia attacks across the region, with more injured and sexually assaulted, he said.

“The lack of internet is allowing them to commit so many violations without accountability. We used the internet to document and report and that would make them a little bit scared,” he said.

The blackout was also affecting camp residents economically by making it impossible for them to request or receive money from family abroad, Rojal said.

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In a tweet, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) called the blackout “a violation of international law”.


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