Timeline of Internet Disruptions in Africa
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DateCountryAffected Service(s)Government ReasonReported Actual reasonLinks
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February 1996ZambiaAnti-government websiteNone
Anti-government expression/views
https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/1b36/4798ab570b61bbd858b1b5ebc4e45911f236.pdf
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November 2001Somalia (by US)All InternetSuspected terrorist linksSuspected Terrorist Links
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/1672220.stm
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November 2005TunisiaAnti-government websitesNone
Anti-government expression/views
https://www.hrw.org/reports/2005/mena1105/2.htm#_Toc119125694 https://cyber.harvard.edu/publications/2005/Internet_Filtering_in_Tunisia_in_2005
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May 2005LibyaAnti-government websitesNone
Anti-government expression/views
https://www.hrw.org/reports/2005/mena1105/2.htm#_Toc119125694
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February 2006UgandaAnti-government websitesNone
Anti-government expression/views
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communications_in_Uganda
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November 2005MoroccoAnit-government websitesDissident views/ Treason
Anti-government expression/views
https://opennet.net/studies/morocco2007
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May 2007EthiopiaAnti-government websitesNone
Anti-government expression/views
http://news.softpedia.com/news/Google-Blocked-In-Ethiopia-53799.shtml
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February 2007GuineaAll InternetNational securityCalls for President's resignation
https://opennet.net/blog/2007/02/media-and-internet-blackout-guinea http://allafrica.com/stories/200702210655.html
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January 2007LibyaAnti-government websitesUpholding constitution
Anti-government expression/views
https://opennet.net/studies/libya2007
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January 2007MoroccoAnti-government websitesDissident views/Treason
Anti-government expression/views
https://opennet.net/studies/morocco2007
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May 2007MoroccoYouTubeNoneParody video of Moroccan king
https://mashable.com/2007/05/27/youtube-maroc/#WGIEWzPfx8q8
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February 2007TunisiaAnti-government websitesNone
Anti-government expression/views
https://opennet.net/studies/tunisia2007
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January 2008Ethiopia
Anti-government websites, blogs
None
Anti-government expression/views
https://opennet.net/research/profiles/ethiopia
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July 2008SudanYouTubeNone
Availability of “indecent” and “sexually oriented” clips
https://opennet.net/blog/2008/07/sudan-blocks-youtube-is-it-political-or-social
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August 2008TunisiaFacebookNonePolitical dissent
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/feb/25/twitter-facebook-uprisings-arab-libya
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May 2010Ethiopia
Anti-government websites/Foreign websites
None
Anti-government expression/views
https://freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-net/2011/ethiopia
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January 2011EgyptAll internetNational securityAnti-Government protests
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_censorship_in_the_Arab_Spring#Egypt
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February 2011LibyaAll InternetNational securityPolitical protests
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_censorship_in_the_Arab_Spring#Egypt
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October 2013SudanAll InternetNational securityFuel hike protests
https://www.accessnow.org/mass-internet-shutdown-in-sudan-follows-days-of-protest/
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January 2015DR CongoAll Internet/SMSNational security
Protests against Kabila's 3rd term bid
https://cpj.org/2015/01/drc-halts-internet-access-and-cellphone-services-a.php
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June 2015AlgeriaAll internetMaintenance
Political unrest regarding President's health
https://qz.com/812689/oromo-protests-ethiopias-internet-shutdown-could-drain-millions-of-dollars-from-the-economy/
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April 2015BurundiSocial MediaNational Security
Protests against Nkirunziza's third term bid
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-32512668
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March 2015CongoAll internet/SMSNational SecurityElections Protests
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2016/03/congo-media-blackout-presidential-elections-160320044041238.html
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January 2015NigerSocial media/SMSNational SecurityPublic protests
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-01-22/niger-blocks-sms-social-networks-to-prevent-more-riots-rfi
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March 2016MoroccoSocial media/IM servicesRegulatory infringementsTelco lobbying
https://freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-net/2016/morocco
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April 2016ChadAll internet NoneElection rigging
https://www.news24.com/Africa/News/internet-cut-in-chad-after-tense-polls-20160411
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June 2016AlgeriaSocial mediaExam Malpractice preventionNone
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-36570808
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July 2016EthiopiaAll internetExam Malpractice prevention
Anti-government expression/views
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/may/31/ethiopia-turns-off-internet-students-sit-exams
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August 2016GabonAll internetNational securityPost Election unrest
https://qz.com/771996/gabon-is-the-latest-african-country-to-shut-down-its-internet-as-election-protests-grow/
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February 2016UgandaSocial mediaNational securityElection protests
https://qz.com/696552/more-african-countries-are-blocking-internet-access-during-elections/
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December 2016The GambiaAll internet/Outbound callsNational securityElection protests
https://qz.com/850002/gambias-government-has-shut-down-the-internet-on-the-eve-of-elections/
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May 2017EthiopiaAll internetExam Malpractice prevention
Anti-government expression/views
https://face2faceafrica.com/article/african-countries-where-internet-connection-was-disrupted-or-shut-down/4
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January 2017CameroonAll internetNational security
Anti-government expression/views
https://face2faceafrica.com/article/cameroon-protests-2017
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September 2017TogoAll internetNational SecurityAnti-government protests
https://qz.com/1070753/togo-shuts-down-internet-to-counter-anti-faure-gnassingbe-protests/
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June 2017AlgeriaAll internetExam Malpractice preventionNone
https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20170612-algeria-blocks-internet-access-to-prevent-exam-cheats/
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August 2017DR CongoAll internet/Social mediaNational SecurityAnti-government protests
http://www.africanews.com/2017/08/08/drc-opposition-observes-national-shutdown-government-blocks-social-media/
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November 2017SomalilandSocial Media Fake news preventionNone
https://qz.com/1126826/somaliland-is-blocking-facebook-twitter-linkedin-instagram-snapchat-and-viber-during-elections-to-avoid-fake-news/
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December 2017EthiopiaAll internetNational securityAnti-government protests
https://www.voanews.com/a/as-violence-flares-in-ethiopia-internet-goes-dark/4164223.html
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December 2017DR CongoAll internet/SMSNational SecurityAnti-government protests
https://www.ifex.org/democratic_republic_of_congo/2018/01/05/protesters-killed-internet-down/
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January 2018DR CongoAll internet/SMSNational SecurityAnti-government protests
https://cipesa.org/2018/01/disruptions-to-digital-communications-persist-in-the-democratic-republic-of-congo/
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March 2018Sierra LeoneAll internetElection riggingNone
http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/01/why-sierra-leone-temporarily-shutdown-internet-after-runoff-vote//
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March 2018ChadAll internetNational securityAnti-government protests
https://face2faceafrica.com/article/african-countries-where-internet-connection-was-disrupted-or-shut-down/2
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