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Egypt Pulls the Plug on Facebook’s Free Basics

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Egypt Shuts Down Facebook Free Basics, Facebook free internet service, free basics, etisalat free basics, etisalat free internet, egypt blocks internet

Cairo – Egyptian authorities shut down Facebook’s free internet service three weeks before the anniversary of the Jan. 25 uprising. 

A National Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (NTRA) source who declined to be named told Digital Boom a “security reason” associated with the anniversary of the Jan. 25 uprising is behind the decision to stop the service, which is only accessible to Etisalat Egypt subscribers. 

Facebook and Etisalat Egypt launched the service two months ago, allowing users to access specific news websites freely through freebasics.com.

The Emirati mobile operator and Egypt’s NTRA didn’t issue any official statements, the Associated Press reports. Facebook however expressed disappointment at the shutdown, hoping to restart the program soon.

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