Myanmar cuts wireless internet service amid coup protests
Myanmar's wireless broadband internet services were shut down on Friday by order of the military, a local provider said, as protesters continued to defy the threat of lethal violence to oppose the junta's takeover, AP reports.
A directive from the Ministry of Transport and Communications on Thursday instructed that "all wireless broadband data services be temporarily suspended until further notice,” according to a statement posted online by local provider Ooredoo.
Fibre-based landline internet connections were still working, albeit at drastically reduced speeds.
Also on Friday, the New York-based Human Rights Watch issued a report saying that Myanmar's military has forcibly disappeared hundreds of people, including politicians, election officials, journalists, activists and protesters and refused to confirm their location or allow access to lawyers or family members in violation of international law.
“The military junta’s widespread use of arbitrary arrests and enforced disappearances appears designed to strike fear in the hearts of anti-coup protesters,” said Brad Adams, Human Rights Watch's Asia director.
“Concerned governments should demand the release of everyone disappeared and impose targeted economic sanctions against junta leaders to finally hold this abusive military to account.”
The crisis in the Southeast Asian nation has expanded sharply in the past week, both in the number of protesters killed and with military airstrikes against the guerrilla forces of the Karen ethnic minority in their homeland along the border with Thailand.