Central Asia’s most populous nation of Uzbekistan has blocked access to Wikipedia in its language, regional media reported on Friday.
Users trying to access Wikipedia in Uzbek from Uzbekistan have been redirected to Msn.com for the past few weeks, CA-News.org said. The site is accessible from outside the country, and the blockade does not include Wikipedia in other languages.
A spokesman for the country’s information and communication watchdog in Tashkent promised a comment when reached by telephone on Friday, but then stopped returning calls. Uzbekistan’s embassy in Moscow could not comment.
Uz.wikipedia.org had 7,876 articles as of Friday. Of the country’s 30-million population, almost 9 million are Internet users, according to the government’s statistics voiced in January.
Uzbekistan briefly blocked the entire Wikipedia twice before, in 2007 and 2008. The country is notorious for its online censorship, which landed it on the list of “enemies of the Internet” by Reporters Without Borders in 2011.