Lukashenka authorizes Internet blocking

The building of Beltelecom. Minsk, Belarus. May 6, 2021.
Photo: AV / Belsat

Alyaksandr Lukashenka has signed a law authorizing the blocking of the Internet, BelTA reports.

According to the document, the operation of telecommunication networks and facilities may be restricted or even terminated to prevent situations that “pose a threat to national security.”

The operational and analytical center will assume management of the public telecommunications network under the President. Failure of telecommunications operators to comply with requirements to suspend or limit the operation of telecommunication networks and facilities will be regarded as a gross violation of legislation on licensing activities in the field of communications.

The law comes into force after its official publication.

The Internet was actively blocked in Belarus in the first days after the presidential elections in 2020. As a result, Belarus lost almost $170 million for three days of Internet restrictions. It was also restricted during Sunday marches. Now such blockages will become official.