The United States is stepping up its support for the free flow of information to the Iranian people, according to Deputy Secretary of the Treasury, Wally Adeyemo, as Iranians take to the streets to condemn the killing of Mahsa Amini.
After Ebrahim Raisi’s administration blocked internet access for the majority of Iran, US Treasury Department issued licences on Friday to broaden the selection of internet services available to Iranians, Al Arabiya reports.
Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish-Iranian women, was taken into custody last week for “improper hijab” and shortly thereafter went into a coma. She passed away on Friday – sparking protests in Iranian streets and on social media.
Foreign diplomats based in Tehran and internet monitoring organizations claim that several regions of the nation have blocked or restricted access to the internet, the Al Arabiya report says.
US Deputy Secretary of Treasury, Wally Adeyemo, was quoted: “As courageous Iranians take to the streets to protest the death of Mahsa Amini, the United States is redoubling its support for the free flow of information to the Iranian people.”
He claimed that the US was assisting Iranians in becoming better armed to thwart efforts by the government to restrict them.
The licences, according to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, will enable IT companies to offer more digital services to Iranians, such as cloud computing services, to enhance their online security and privacy.
Following the most recent fatal protests and the death of Mahsa Amini, the US issued sanctions against Iran's morality police and six Iranians on Thursday. Iran Human Rights claims that during the protests, Iranian security forces had killed at least 31 citizens (IHR).