Internet shutdown in Turkey’s Southeast

A full internet shutdown has been reported affecting Turkey’s Southeast regions, coinciding with the state’s removal of elected local officials from office this morning in predominantly ethnic-Kurdish regions of the country.

The loss of connectivity affected both landline and mobile internet operators through fifteen cities, cutting off an estimated 12 million Turkish citizens.

Start: ~8:00AM
End: ~12:00PM
Duration: ~4 hours

Mobile internet access was not restored, in some cases, until as late in the afternoon as 2PM.

Additional unconfirmed reports suggest GSM mobile telephony services, including voice calls, may have been entirely disabled for a period between 8:30-9:30AM by operator Vodafone.

The US Embassy in Ankara was amongst international observers which expressed concern over the state takeover. It is believed the shutdown may have been implemented to suppress voices of dissent or opposition.

Mainstream media reports that clashes ensued as 28 elected mayors were dismissed from their posts.

TurkeyBlocks analysts believe that the internet blackout was implemented using Turkey’s new “killswitch” legislation, while the takeovers were justified under Turkey’s “state of emergency” OHAL measures which suspend certain political and human rights following the 15 July attempted coup.

The TurkeyBlocks project was unable to collect independent measurements at the time due to limited infrastructure in the affected region.