Colombo, April 23 (newsin.asia): The Sri Lankan government may re-activate social media platforms on Wednesday, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told the foreign media here on Tuesday.
Facebook and YouTube were barred to prevent the spread of rumours and other undesirable content in the aftermath of the serial suicide bombings in Colombo and two other towns on Sunday which claimed more than 310 lives.
“We had to clamp down on it following the bitter experience we had when there were religious riots in Digana (in Central Sri Lanka),” Wickremesinghe said.
Kandy district was rocked by anti-Muslim riots from February 26 to March 10, 2018.
At that time the government at that time kept the ban for a number of days, even after the unrest had been contained, as it wanted Facebook to come up with a credible system to filter unwanted content. The regional office of Facebook located in India, said that it did not have Sinhalese knowing staff to filter all the postings in that language. However given local and diplomatic pressure, the government restored the platform.
This time, a Facebook () representative told CNN on Sunday: “We are aware of the government’s statement regarding the temporary blocking of social media platforms. People rely on our services to communicate with their loved ones and we are committed to maintaining our services and helping the community and the country during this tragic time.”