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Universal Newswires

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SATURDAY, February 28, 2015

Central Asia

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Uzbeks temporarily shut down Facebook to block negative news

The Uzbek government is believed to have shut down local Facebook access to block a negative news story

Friday, October 22, 2010 - Facebook in Uzbekistan was temporarily shut down one day after the country was ranked near the bottom of a global survey on press freedom. The government is believed to have shut the site down, the Russian news agency Ferghana.ru reported on Friday.

Facebook was available to Uzbek users again Friday morning and some mobile device users said they had not been blocked, Ferghana.ru reported.

The at-least partial blackout of the site occurred one day after Uzbekistan was ranked 173rd out of 178 countries for press freedom in a Reporters Without Borders (RSF) annual ranking released yesterday.

The Uzbek government appeared sensitive to the report. They blocked the article that covered the report on Newsru.com, but did not block the site itself.

Before it  was temporarily blackout, Uzbek users of Facebook were able to view links from blocked news sites Birdamlik.info, Uznews.net and Ferghana.ru among others. According to Ferghana.ru,

Facebook has become one of the primary means for Uzbeks to view such forbidden news sites.

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