Govt lifts restriction on viber

The government decided to lift restrictions on Viber messenger service from midnight yesterday in a bid to ease the difficulties faced especially by families with members living overseas.

Issuing a statement Director General of Government Information Sudarshana Gunawardhana said that the government had decided to restrict access to social media platforms in a bid to curb the spread of hate speech and misinformation.

"With this step the spread of hate and violence slowed down and now the security situation in the country is improving. The government is also taking legal action against those involved in the violence in Kandy."

Gunawardhana said restrictions on social media had created numerous difficulties for those who communicated with their loved ones working overseas. It had made life difficult for tourists, businessmen and small scale entrepreneurs. The decision to lift the restrictions imposed on Viber, the most widely used messenger service, should be seen as a step to address those grievances.

The government was holding discussions with owners of other social media platforms to ensure that those sites would not be used again for hate mongering. "We hope to restore access to other social media platforms as well after implementing a proper security system," Gunawardhana said.

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