Elon Musk announced that he was activating Starlink in response to U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s tweet announcing the issuing of a General License to provide the Iranian people with access to digital communications.
“We took action today to advance Internet freedom and the free flow of information for the Iranian people, issuing a General License to provide them greater access to digital communications to counter the Iranian government’s censorship,” Secretary Blinken said.
Currently, in Iran, massive protests are happening as a result of the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who was detained by the morality police for her head scarf not being properly worn. Although she had no known heart-related health problems, the police said she suddenly died of heart failure.
Activating Starlink …
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 23, 2022
Eyewitnesses said that she was beaten and her head hit the side of a police car. This along with leaked medical scans suggested cerebral hemorrhage and stroke. In response to her death, there have been several large-scale protests across Iran that received international support from world leaders, celebrities, and organizations.
The Iranian government sided with the morality police and has been suppressing the protests, shooting protestors with metal pellets and birdshot, and deploying tear gas and water cannons. The government also blocked access to many apps including Instagram and WhatsApp and limited internet access to prevent protestors from organizing.
This is where Starlink comes in. A few days ago, Elon Musk said that Starlink would seek exemption from Iranian sanctions. This was in response to @Erfankasraie who asked if Elon could provide Starlink to the Iranian people. “It could be a game changer for the future.”
Starlink will ask for an exemption to Iranian sanctions in this regard
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 19, 2022
Elon also responded,” OK,” to @agusantonetti who asked if he could do the same for other countries under a dictatorship such as Cuba. This isn’t the first time Elon Musk has intervened to help the people of a nation. He and SpaceX deployed Starlink to Ukraine to support the nation as it faced Russia’s brutal and unethical invasion.
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