The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority on Tuesday confirmed that it had suspended mobile broadband across the country on the interior ministry’s instructions.
Meanwhile, Netblocks, an organisation that tracks internet outages, said access to Twitter, Facebook and Youtube was restricted across Pakistan amid PTI Chairman Imran Khan’s arrest earlier today from the Islamabad High Court’s premises in the Al-Qadir Trust case.
The organisation further said that “total internet shutdowns have been observed in some regions” in a report.
“Real-time network data show the disruption in effect on some but not all mobile and fixed-line internet providers in Pakistan at the time of writing. The study is taken from an initial sample size of 60 measurements from 30 vantage points across Pakistan,” it added.
The report recommended that the disruption could be worked around using a virtual private network which could circumvent “government internet censorship measures”.
“Metrics are consistent with an intentional disruption to service applied centrally at Pakistan’s national internet backbone.
“NetBlocks recommends against the use of network disruptions and social media restrictions to limit political speech, given their disproportionate impact to fundamental rights including freedom of expression and freedom assembly,” the organisation said.