Indonesian government lifts ban on Telegram

JAKARTA • The Indonesian government has unblocked the Web version of messaging service Telegram, Communications and Information Minister Rudiantara announced on Thursday morning.

The ministry's director-general of informatics applications, Mr Semuel Abrijani, said the unlocking process would take time as it involved numerous Internet operators.

The move followed an agreement between the government and Telegram on several countermeasures to block negative content in the application, especially relating to radicalism and terrorism.

Mr Rudiantara and Telegram chief executive Pavel Durov met on Aug 1 to discuss the issue.

"The countermeasures include a special channel for communicating with (Telegram), an algorithm to filter negative content and a procedure to process complaints on the same day," the minister said.

The ministry reported that Telegram has taken down 166 channels promoting radicalism and terrorism as of Thursday.

Indonesia, a country of 260 million people, is a prolific user of social media. Last month, the government threatened to shut down Telegram, used by several million Indonesians, if it did not develop procedures to block unlawful content.

THE JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 12, 2017, with the headline 'Indonesian government lifts ban on Telegram'. Print Edition | Subscribe