The UN Human Rights Council adopted a new resolution on human rights on the Internet, particularly focusing on Internet shutdowns during protests, which has previously been happening in a lot of countries.
For example, there were protests in Iran in 2019 due to an increase in gasoline prices, and the authorities limited Internet access in the country after that.
Such decisions provoke public outcry in many countries since shutdowns significantly prevent people from finding, receiving, or distributing information.
Internet outages during a pandemic further exacerbate the situation, as they deprive people of the opportunity to receive important information and services during a crisis. The UN believes that such restrictions cannot be justified by maintaining public order or national security.
The adopted resolution strongly condemns the shutdown of the Internet for intentional and arbitrary prevention, as well as disruption of access or distribution of information. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights will examine the trend towards such measures by governments of different countries and present the findings to the organization next year.