A session in Iran's parliament. FILE PHOTO

Iran’s Parliament Adopts Bill To Further Restrict Internet

2/22/2022

Iran's parliament has approved the general outline of a bill to enforce restrictions on the internet and access to various apps and platforms in the country.

The bill, ironically titled Legislation to Protect Cyberspace Users’ Rights, was passed by the so-called Joint Siyanat Committee on Tuesday.

Instead of voting in a general session, the bill was sent for final approval to the committee, as has been the case with many recent controversial legislations.

Many internet users and some media outlets in Iran have said that the implementation of this plan has practically started in in recent weeks as the authorities reduced bandwidth and slowed broadband as a means of censorship.

Reza Taghipour, former communications minister and a Tehran representative, who heads the committee on cyberspace, said on Tuesday that foreign companies should abide by the new Iranian law to remain active in the country.

The new law would require foreign and domestic social-media networks and messaging applications to register with a regulatory and supervisory board, including representatives of the intelligence ministry and the intelligence organization of the Revolutionary Guards.

The ministry of communications and information technology would be charged with blocking social networks and messaging applications that failed to gain approval.

Iran has restricted access to the internet for two decades and popular social media platforms such as Facebook and You Tube for the past ten years. An overwhelming majority of Iranians routinely use circumvention software to go around government blockages.

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