Elon Musk Deploys Starlink in Iran Despite Nationwide Internet Restriction

Kutl Ahmedia

Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, has introduced his satellite-based Starlink service in Iran in response to the country's government restricting internet access in the wake of huge protests.

According to reports, the Iranian government turned off internet connection for many of its residents on Wednesday in response to widespread protests over the death of Mahsa Amini, 22, in police custody.

Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX, said on Friday that he will make Starlink available in Iran.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken previously announced on Twitter that the United States was advancing internet freedom and the free flow of information for the Iranian people by issuing a General License to give them greater access to digital communications in order to combat what he claimed was the Iranian government's censorship.

Musk responded to Blinken's tweet with "Activating Starlink."

Protesters have been demonstrating against strict dress standards, including the compulsory wearing of the hijab, and demanding fundamental freedoms.

Last weekend, protests erupted in Iran after Mahsa Amini died following her detention by Iran's morality police. A few days after falling into a coma while being held for allegedly breaching a law about hijabs, she passed away.

Notably, New York and New Jersey politicians encouraged the US Treasury Department earlier this week to approve approval if SpaceX sought licensing authorization to make internet service available in Iran.

Fox News stated that lawmakers, led by Claudia Tenney of New York and Tom Malinowski of New Jersey, appealed to the Treasury Department. After Musk tweeted on Monday that SpaceX would seek exemptions from penalties against the country, the letter was sent Tuesday.

In the past, SpaceX has deployed Starlink in emergency scenarios, including as in Ukraine during the Russian invasion and in the South Pacific islands of Tonga following a volcano eruption.


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