Iranians see widespread internet disruptions amid protests

In this Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022, photo taken by an individual not employed by the Associated Press and obtained by the AP outside Iran, protesters chant slogans during a protest over the death of a woman who was detained by the morality police, in downtown Tehran, Iran. Iranians saw their access to Instagram, one of the few Western social media platforms still available in the country, disrupted on Wednesday following days of the mass protests. (AP Photo)

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Iranians experienced widespread internet disruptions on Wednesday amid days of mass protests against the government, including a loss of access to Instagram, one of the last Western social media platforms available in the country.

An Iranian official had earlier hinted that such measures might be taken out of security concerns, and the loss of connectivity will make it more difficult for people to organize protests and share information about the government's rolling crackdown on dissent.

Iran has seen nationwide protests over the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who was detained for allegedly wearing the mandatory Islamic headscarf too loosely. Demonstrators have clashed with police and called for the downfall of the Islamic Republic itself, even as Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi addressed the U.N. General Assembly on Wednesday.

London-based rights group Amnesty International said Wednesday that security forces had used batons, birdshot, tear gas, and water cannons to disperse protesters.