Bahrain Accused Of Waging ‘Cyber War’ On Protest Village

July 6, 2016

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On July 5, 2015, it was reported that the government of Bahrain had been accused of launching a “cyber war” on a village beset by anti-government protests by cutting off internet access and mobile coverage to the village. Protests began in the village of Diraz on June 20, when the Bahraini government stripped the country’s highest ranking Shi’ite cleric, Sheikh Isa Qassim, of his citizenship. Within three days of Qassim’s citizenship being revoked, residents of Diraz began reporting that internet and mobile phone service was unusually slow at night. Internet and cell service is allegedly cut at 7:30 at night as people gather for prayers and Iftar outside Qassim’s home, then returns around 3am after morning prayer as protestors begin to disperse. The hashtag #Diraz has reportedly been absent from content posted locally, instead being dominated by accounts posting anti-Shi’ite and sectarian commentary and videos.

Source: Middle East Eye, July 5, 2016.