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Zuckerberg ‘Stunned’ After WhatsApp Blocked in Brazil

Mark Zuckerberg isn't pleased with a Brazilian judge's decision to block Facebook-owned WhatsApp for 48 hours.

"Tonight, a Brazilian judge blocked WhatsApp for more than 100 million people who rely on it in her country," the company CEO wrote Wednesday night on Facebook.

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"We are working hard to get this block reversed. Until then, Facebook Messenger is still active and you can use it to communicate instead."

It's not clear exactly why WhatsApp was blocked, only that the order is related to a criminal case in Sao Paulo state, according to the Associated Press.

Facebook purchased the messaging service WhatsApp last year for $19 billion. While the service might be down, Brazilians are flocking to an alternative: Telegram Messenger. The company tweeted it had gained 500,000 users in Brazil in three hours after WhatsApp was blocked.

Only three hours after that, it tweeted that the number had climbed to 1.5 million.

Mark Zuckerberg called yesterday a "sad day for Brazil" and implored people in the country to "please make your voice heard and help your government reflect the will of its people."

"I am stunned that our efforts to protect people's data would result in such an extreme decision by a single judge to punish every person in Brazil who uses WhatsApp," he wrote. "We hope the Brazilian courts quickly reverse course."

Update 12:29 p.m. ET: A Brazilian court overturned the judge's order from a lower court on Thursday morning, according to Reuters, lifting the suspension on WhatsApp in Brazil.

In response, Zuckerberg wrote on Facebook, "WhatsApp is now back online in Brazil! Your voices have been heard and the block has been lifted. Thank you to our community for helping resolve this!"