US says Congo's 20 days without internet '20 days too many'

JOHANNESBURG — The United States ambassador to Congo says 20 days without internet in the country are "20 days too many" and that access cut off just after the disputed presidential election "needs to be restored now."

Ambassador Mike Hammer isn't the only diplomat in Congo expressing frustration. British Ambassador John Murton has been tweeting regular reminders of the shutdown, saying on Friday that "this poses problems for hospitals, universities, commerce."

Internet service in Congo has been cut off since Dec. 31 in a likely attempt to dampen speculation about the election results. The Constitutional Court could rule as early as Saturday on a challenge to the results filed by declared runner-up Martin Fayulu.

Zimbabwe has joined Congo in cutting off internet service in recent days amid a crackdown there on protests.

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