Syria goes dark


Syria on Thursday was abruptly cut off from the Internet, two leading US Internet analysis firms said. Many mobile phone communications in Syria appeared to be cut off too, the BBC and several news organizations reported.

“Starting at 10:26 UTC (12:26pm in Damascus), Syria’s international Internet connectivity shut down,” an analyst with Internet monitoring firm Renesys wrote on the company’s blog  Thursday.  “In the global routing table, all 84 of Syria’s IP address blocks have become unreachable, effectively removing the country from the Internet.”

“We are investigating the dynamics of the outage and will post updates as they become available,” the post continued.

Internet analysis firm Akamai confirmed the analysis, as seen in the graphic above.

The Syrian regime appeared to have cut off the telecom services, in what may be an attempt to make coordination harder for Syrian opposition forces, an activist outside of the country told Al Monitor.

There were also reports of flights being reduced or halted into the Syrian capital Damascus Thursday afternoon. “EgyptAir flight number: MS721 & Ethiopian airlines Flight number: ET1454 both successfully landed in Damascus international airport at 15:15pm these were the last known flights to land at the airport,” a Syrian activist who uses the handle @AlexanderPageSY wrote on Twitter. “Emirates Flight number: EK913 which was scheduled to land at Damascus international Airport at 15:35pm was cancelled no flights have landed then on.”