Myanmar's telcos restore internet services

17 February 2021

Internet access in Myanmar has been restored after authorities ordered the country’s operators to turn off data services, following widespread anti-government protests after a military coup.

Telenor Myanmar issued a short statement saying its data network is now back online. The company said the Ministry of Transport and Communications (MoTC) directed all mobile operators to temporarily shut down data networks, noting voice and SMS services remained open.

Telenor Group said in a separate statement it complied with the directive, as required by its licence, but added it “views this development with deep concern. We have emphasised to the authorities that access to telecom services should be maintained at all times, especially during times of conflict, to ensure people’s basic right to freedom of expression and access to information”.

Myanmar’s military declared a state of emergency on 1 February after a coup ousted then de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s democratically-elected government.