Facebook blocked in Thailand to prevent anti-army protest
|image credit : techhinasia.com|
Facebook users in coup-rattled Thailand reacted with alarm Wednesday after experiencing widespread problems accessing the social networking site, but the junta quickly denied imposing a block.
“Urgent: Facebook has been suspended,” one user wrote on Twitter. “Surely that would be suicide. Whole country would protest,” wrote another user.
But just minutes later users celebrated: “Facebook is back!!” The military regime which seized power on May 22 said it had not pulled the plug on the site.
“We have not ordered a block of Facebook — it’s not our policy,” said army spokesman Colonel Winthai Suvaree.
“Facebook experienced a slight technical failure and the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology is working to fix it now,” he said.
But some users were unconvinced, speculating that it could have been a trial run for a possible blackout in the future, or a warning shot to social media users not to criticise the coup.
Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook are hugely popular in the country.
The junta has warned it would block any social media platforms found to carry content that incites violence or is critical of its military leaders.