After blackout in Syria Internet is back

DAMASCUS- Internet connections were restored in many areas in Syria on Saturday afternoon after almost three-day blackout. Syria state-run SANA news agency said technical teams brought the services back online Saturday.

Syrian Internet and mobile phone links were cut for almost three days, starting from Thursday 12:26 pm till 17:00 pm Saturday. The communication blackout suspected to have been orchestrated by the regime, which is accused of trying to block communication between opposition and rebel on the ground inside the country.

The Internet was working in Syria’s capital of Damascus and the central city of Homs on Saturday, activists reported, after a two-day blackout that experts said was highly likely to have been caused by authorities.

Press reports indicated that President Bashar al-Assad’s government has been accused before of cutting Internet and telephone connections to block opposition activist and rebel communications during the 20-month-old revolt.

Earlier on Thursday; Syrian Authorities had attributed the latest outage to a “terrorist” attack or a technical fault.

The communications black-out made it hard to check what was happening on the ground across the country and even in other neighborhoods of the capital Damascus from Thursday till Saturday.

The only information people had been getting was the sight of clouds of smoke and the non-stop sound of fighter jets, military helicopters and explosions, indicating how heavy the fighting continues to be in the south-eastern area of the capital Damascus, especially on the highway leading to its international airport.

US State Department says the Syrian government cut communications in a sign of its desperation.

AFP reported that Google and Twitter said that they had reactivated a voice-tweet program to allow Syrians affected by an Internet shutdown to get messages out. It was last used in 2011, when the Internet was shut down in Egypt during its revolution

The UN Secretary General has decried the worsening humanitarian situation in Syria, saying civilians were being massacred almost daily across the country while wide-scale human-rights violations were being committed by both sides.

Ban Ki-moon warned the UN General Assembly in New York that Syrian refugee numbers could swell to 700,000 by January.

He predicted that up to four million people would be in need of assistance during the winter as a consequence of ever more brutal violence.

UN chief words were echoed by the UN-Arab League envoy for Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, who told the UN gathering that Syria would become a failed state unless a negotiated political solution to the conflict could be found.

Syrian troops are fighting a 20-month-old revolt against the President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

Activists say some 40,000 people have been killed in the crisis, which began with pro-democracy protests but has morphed into a civil war.