Govt blocks telegram app after long observation: President

Jakarta (ANTARA News) – The Indonesian Government blocked Web-based Telegram application only after making a long observation, and it was not an immediate decision, according to President Joko Widodo (Jokowi).

“The Government has conducted a long observation, and we are a nation that prioritizes state security, public security,” Jokowi told the press here, Sunday.

He said thousands of social media accounts have been categorized as potential to disturb the national security.

“There are not only one, two, three, four, five, six, but thousands of them. Therefore, the decision has been made,” he said.

The President said the public still could use other social media applications.

Despite efforts by operators of the social media application to filter certain accounts, thousands of accounts are still in operation and being used to build international communication related to terrorism.

He said the Communication and Informatics Minister had talked about the matters with the operators for several times.

“I think the Communication and Informatics Minister had conveyed about the issue not only once or twice,” he said.

In a statement on Friday (July 14), the Ministry of Communication and Informatics said it has asked internet companies to block access to 11 addresses that the web version is available through.

“This has to be done because there are many channels on this service that are full of radical and terrorist propaganda, hatred, ways to make bombs, how to carry out attacks, disturbing images, which are all in conflict with Indonesian law,” the ministry said in a statement on its website.

The ministry is preparing for the total closure of Telegram in Indonesia, where it has several million users, if it does not develop procedures to block unlawful content.

Meanwhile, Associated Press reported on Saturday that Telegram has now blocked the channels that were reported to it by the Indonesian government.

Pavel Durov, who with his brother Nikolai founded the app in 2013, said in a message to his 40,000 followers on Telegram that hed been unaware of a failure to quickly respond to an Indonesian government request to block a number of offending channels – chat groups on the app – but was now rectifying the situation, AP reported.

Source: Antara News