We call on the Government of Egypt to ensure that freedom of expression is respected by, among other measures, unblocking Internet sites.
Statement by Minister Cannon on Situation in Egypt - Jan 27, 2011
Nous faisons appel au gouvernement égyptien pour assurer le respect de la liberté d’expression, notamment en cessant de bloquer l’accès à des sites Internet.
In the US, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs (@PressSec)
Very concerned about violence in Egypt - government must respect the rights of the Egyptian people & turn on social networking and internet
And a statement by President Obama
I also call upon the Egyptian government to reverse the actions that they’ve taken to interfere with access to the Internet, to cell phone service and to social networks that do so much to connect people in the 21st century.
In a press briefing, Robert Gibbs frames these as universal human rights
it is our strong belief that inside of the framework of basic individual rights are the rights of those to have access to the Internet and to sites for open communication and social networking.
The US State Department has also been calling for restoration of Internet and social networking access. Philip J. Crowley, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, tweeted
Widely reported, e.g. Washington Post - U.S. warns against blocking social media, elevates Internet freedom policies.
In case you're wondering what happened, here's what Internet traffic to and from Egypt looked like, from Thursday to Friday from New York Times article Egypt Cuts Off Most Internet and Cell Service.
It's reported that with broadband Internet completely blocked, but telephones still partially working, people have turned to dial-up to ISPs outside of Egypt, using old modems: Pour contourner le blocage du Web, les modems 56K.
(Note that Blackbird Pie, which I used to embed tweets, always says "less than a minute ago"; it loses date information.)