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Information Minister Reverses Stance, Confirms X Services Shutdown in Pakistan

X Services

Days after initially claiming that the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, remained accessible to online users, Pakistan’s Information Minister Atta Tarar has now conceded that the popular social networking app is indeed suspended in the country.

In an interview with a local news channel on Monday, Tarar stated, “Twitter was already banned when we came to power and there is no official notification [about this].”

He emphasized the necessity for establishing a charter outlining “do’s and don’ts” for social media usage, suggesting that discussions between political parties should determine the “red lines” that should not be crossed on such platforms.

Expressing his dismay over allegations against women, abusive behavior, and smear campaigns against martyrs’ sacrifices on social media, Tarar’s remarks highlight concerns over the misuse of online platforms for harmful activities.

It’s worth noting that Tarar had dismissed questions regarding X’s suspension on March 13, asserting that the platform was operational.

However, X services has remained inaccessible in Pakistan for over a month, following its suspension ahead of the February 8 general election. Despite court orders for its resumption, users have faced intermittent disruptions in accessing the platform.

Human rights activists and civil society organizations have expressed profound concern over the increasing instances of internet shutdowns and social media platform blocking.

They have called for the immediate restoration of X, launching a campaign with the hashtag #InternetKholo to draw attention to the matter.

Criticism has been directed at the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) for its silence and failure to provide reasons for the platform’s suspension, raising questions about its mandate and accountability.

The ongoing debate underscores broader issues surrounding freedom of expression, access to information, and the role of regulatory bodies in shaping online discourse in Pakistan.

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I am a dynamic professional, specializing in Peace and Conflict Studies, Conflict Management and Resolution, and International Relations. My expertise is particularly focused on South Asian Conflicts and the intricacies of the Indian Ocean and Asia Pacific Politics. With my skills as a Content Writer, I serve as a bridge between academia and the public, translating complex global issues into accessible narratives. My passion for fostering understanding and cooperation on the national and international stage drives me to make meaningful contributions to peace and global discourse.


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