Following the recent coup de tat, Myanmar’s Commander in Chief of Defense Services, Min Aung Hlaing, sent an order to block Facebook and other messaging services claiming that it was in the interest of national stability.
The true motive perhaps can be traced back to the recent rise in opposition to the military head-on Facebook, which is the primary internet stage for much of the country where all business companies and leaders present their views.
Images of widespread protests against the coup had been circulation around on Facebook. People in Yangon and other cities banged on pots and pans and honked car horns for the second night on Wednesday as a show of protest against Monday’s coup.
The Ministry of Communications and Information of Myanmar in a statement said that it would be blocking Facebook until February 7. Facebook has around 53 million users in the country, which is about half of the entire population of Myanmar.
In the statement, the Ministry claimed, “Currently the people who are troubling the country’s stability are spreading fake news and misinformation and causing misunderstanding among people by using Facebook.”
Even though Facebook has been blocked, some people have still been able to access the social media website as the block remains uneven while many are now using VPNs to do so.