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David Cameron Wanted Internet Shutdown During Britain’s Summer Riots

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International Business Times
November 3, 2011

Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron wanted the internet shut-down during the riots that swept England in August in order to prevent rioters from communicating with each other over social media networks, according to media reports.

Fears grew at the time that the disturbances were largely organized by youths using their mobile phones.

However, Cameron was persuaded against taking any such drastic measures by the Foreign Secretary William Hague over worries that such steps would lead to accusations of hypocrisy over the rights of free speech in Britain.

Reportedly, during a meeting of COBRA (the government’s crisis response committee) on August 9 – in the wake of massive looting and vandalism across London, Manchester and Birmingham, Hague warned against closing down Facebook, Twitter and the BlackBerry network. He cited that nations like China and Syria would jump on the issue since Cameron has criticized their practice of state censorship.

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This article was posted: Wednesday, November 2, 2011 at 9:08 am

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