Elon Musk urged to launch Ukraine-like internet link for Eritrea

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Elon Musk

Eritreans residing in different parts of the world are pleading with South Africa-born US billionaire Elon Musk to provide their small Red Sea nation with internet access to end a longstanding blackout according to TheEastAfrican.

The calls come a few days after Mr Musk, the founder of SpaceX, launched a satellite internet service via Starlink for Ukraine to keep Kyiv connected to the internet, which was disrupted after Russia invaded the eastern European country.

Despite the Russia-caused internet outrage, Ukrainians have reportedly been able to use Starlink to stay connected.

In Eritrea, barely one percent of the population has internet access.

Using the campaign hashtag #Starlink4Eritrea, pro-Eritrea Twitter users, mainly in the diaspora, are calling on the billionaire to help their country with internet access similar to what he deployed for war-ravaged Ukraine.

Eritrea, which gained independence from Ethiopia in 1993, has one of the lowest internet access rates in Africa. 

A report by the International Telecommunication Union shows that only one percent of the country’s estimated population of 3.6 million have access to the internet.

The State-owned Eritel is the country’s sole internet provider.

Since there is no mobile internet in Eritrea, its people only use Wi-Fi, one of the slowest globally.

Citizens use bypass online software to help them access social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

Eritrea has been a one-party state since it proclaimed independence on April 27, 1993. The reclusive nation has never held a presidential election. 

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