Togo blocks internet service as election protests continue


Internet access restricted as thousands take to the streets for a second day against President Gnassingbe's rule. Togolese authorities have blocked internet access as opponents of President Faure Gnassingbe marched for a second day against his family's 50-year rule. Hundreds of protesters marched from the opposition stronghold of Be towards a meeting in central Lome, the capital, on Thursday, a witness said. Police later fired tear gas to disperse the protesters. The scale of this week's protests, which the opposition said were attended by hundreds of thousands of people, represented the biggest challenge to Gnassingbe's rule since the aftermath of his ascension to power in 2005.
president of Tgo who rule for 12 years now 2005 - 2013 US-based company Dyn, which monitors the internet, said traffic dropped off at 09:00 GMT in what critics said was a move by the government to suppress protests as other African governments have done. Residents said that text messages had also been blocked. The communications minister could not immediately be reached for comment on the cuts. Analysts said Gnassingbe might find himself isolated amid growing criticism of autocratic rule in West Africa. "The president's position is very fragile, and we do not think his peers in ECOWAS or his friends in Europe will help him if things get ugly," Francois Conradie, head of research at NKC African Economics, said.

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