Loading articles...

As protests wane, Iran lifts ban on messaging app Telegram

FILE - In this Dec. 30, 2017 photo made by an individual not employed by the Associated Press and obtained by the AP outside Iran, a university student attends a protest inside Tehran University while a smoke grenade is thrown by Iranian police, in Tehran, Iran. New unrest in Iran over the past 10 days appears to be waning, but anger over the economy persists. The protests in dozens of towns and cities also showed that a sector of the public was willing to openly call for the removal of Iran's system of rule by clerics -- frustrated not just by the economy but also by concern over Iran's foreign wars and general direction. (AP Photo, File)

TEHRAN, Iran – Iran’s semi-official ILNA news agency is reporting that the ban on a popular messaging app has been lifted, two weeks after waning anti-government protests in which more than 21 people were killed.

The Saturday report says Telegram, which has some 40 million users in Iran, is now accessible once again through both Wi-Fi and mobile networks.

The Associated Press spoke on Saturday with residents from several cities across the country, including Shiraz, Isfahan, Bandar Abbas, Rasht and Oroumieh, who all confirmed that they now have access to the app.

Iran shut down Telegram and the picture-sharing app Instagram during the protests in early January, saying rioters were using them to spread unrest.

Soon afterward authorities restored access to Instagram but Telegram remained banned.