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Syria’s largest city just dropped off the Internet

Andrea Peterson
The Washington Post [1]
August 31, 2013

While the U.S. government continues to weigh military intervention in Syria [2], it appears that Syria’s largest city has gone dark on the Internet. Aleppo, a city in Northern Syria that has been the site of intense fighting between rebel forces and the Assad regime, and the surrounding area appear to have lost connectivity to the Internet as of last night.

The Switch received a tip informing us that Internet was out in parts of Northern Syria. Following up on that lead, we contacted Doug Madory of Internet intelligence company Renesys. In a recent blog post [3], Madory explained that outages in the Aleppo area are strongly correlated to disruptions in Turk Telekom’s service to the Syrian Telecommunications Establishment. When Turk Telekom service drops out of Syria, Aleppo appears to experience a “last mile” outage, but other areas continue to have Internet access through PCCW and Deutsche Telekom.

According to Madory, Turk Telekom service to Syria dropped out at 17:48:42 UTC on Aug 29. This suggests that Internet service in the Aleppo area has been out since last night.

Aleppo reportedly suffered [4] a similar Internet and mobile outage Aug. 13. At the time, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a group critical of the Assad regime, claimed both mobile telecommunications services and Internet were cut off.

Full story here. [1]