AFRINIC rejects proposal to stop allocating IP addresses to governments that shut down Internet access

AFRINIC, the Regional Internet Registry for Africa, has rejected a proposal circulated earlier this year to stop allocating Internet Protocol (IP) addresses to governmental entities in countries that shut down Internet access. The proposal was discussed at a recent meeting in Nairobi, and the registry concluded that the idea ‘might antagonise governments in a way that will worsen the situation as a whole’. AFRINIC, together with several other technical organisations in Africa, issued a statement noting that, while they opposed any form on Internet shutdowns, they were concerned that the proposal at hand would be difficult to implement, would take AFRINIC beyond its technical mandate, and ‘might also impact citizen’s ability to access the Internet beyond the government entities targeted by the proposal’.