The stability and future of five Middle Eastern-themed generic top-level domains (gTLDs) have come under significant threat following the mysterious disappearance of their registry operator, Asia Green IT System (AGIT). This situation has escalated after the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) issued its third breach notice to AGIT.

The gTLDs at risk

The gTLDs in question include:

  • .nowruz: Celebrating the Iranian New Year.
  • .pars: Referring to Persia/Iran.
  • .shia: Representing a branch of Islam.
  • .tci: An outsourced domain for the Telecommunication Company of Iran.
  • .همراه: Translating to “comrade” in Persian.

Reasons behind the crisis

AGIT, based in Istanbul, has failed to maintain several critical operational requirements, including:

  • Whois Services: Essential for domain ownership transparency.
  • Data Escrow: Protecting registrant data against unexpected disruptions.
  • Monthly Transaction Reports: Necessary for operational transparency and accountability.

These lapses have led ICANN to classify the situation as meeting the “RDAP-RDDS emergency threshold,” which denotes significant operational downtime. The rapid escalation saw ICANN issue a breach notice within three days of identifying the failures.

Historical context and current status

AGIT has faced similar issues in the past:

  • 2019: Received its first breach notice, which was later resolved.
  • 2023: Another breach notice was issued and subsequently resolved.
  • Current Year: The third and most severe breach notice has been issued, with the added complication of AGIT seemingly disappearing from the internet.

Currently, none of AGIT’s NIC sites are accessible, and their official website returns a 404 error. This disappearance has added to the uncertainty surrounding these gTLDs.

Operational impact and future implications

Only .nowruz has seen any registrations, albeit minimal and primarily defensive. This limited activity casts further doubt on the viability of these domains. Additionally, CoCCA, AGIT’s backend service provider, has terminated its contract with AGIT due to a breach and has been incrementally disabling essential services like RDAP, Whois, reporting, and escrow deposits.

ICANN’s stance and deadline

ICANN has given AGIT until the end of the month to rectify these breaches or face the termination of their contracts. This ultimatum underscores the severity of the situation and the potential for significant disruption if compliance is not achieved.


The precarious situation with these five Middle Eastern-themed gTLDs highlights the critical need for robust operational management and compliance within the domain registry ecosystem. The coming weeks will be crucial in determining whether AGIT can restore its services and regain ICANN’s confidence, or if these gTLDs will face termination, further complicating the digital landscape for stakeholders in the region.

Stakeholders and domain registrants are advised to stay informed on this issue and consider contingency plans to mitigate potential disruptions. The situation serves as a stark reminder of the importance of consistent regulatory compliance and operational stability in maintaining the trust and functionality of global internet infrastructure.