Pakistan blocks YouTube because of Wilders

25th February 2008, Comments 0 comments

The Pakistani Telecommunications Authority (PTA) has told internet providers in the country that access to popular video site YouTube is blocked until further notice.

25 February 2008

AMSTERDAM – The Pakistani Telecommunications Authority (PTA) has told internet providers in the country that access to popular video site YouTube is blocked until further notice because the site broadcasts anti-Islamic videos.

On Sunday an employee of the service cited a trailer for the anti-Koran film expected from Geert Wilders as an example.  

The employee said that the service is also blocking websites that display the controversial drawings of the prophet Mohammed. The PTA is urging web users to write to YouTube to request that the offensive videos be removed.

If that happens, access to YouTube will be restored, said the PTA employee, who did not want to be named because he is not an official spokesperson.

The Pakistani police announced earlier this month that protection for Dutch and other European embassies and consulates has been stepped up because of Wilders' film. Companies like ABN AMRO, Philips and Makro have also been given extra security.

Wilders says his film literally unfolds within the holy book itself. The footage is framed by the binding of the Koran. After the opening shot the book opens and images of a beheading in Iraq, a stoning in Iran and an execution in Saudi Arabia are shown, for example.

The images are all taken from other sources. No trailer has yet been released, though several fake trailers have turned up on the internet.

Pakistan is not the only country to block access to YouTube. In January a Turkish court banned the broadcasting of YouTube because some videos were insulting to the founder of the Turkish republic, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

Youtube was inaccessible for four months last year in Thailand for videos poking fun at King Bhumibol. Morocco blocked the site last year because of videos criticising the treatment of inhabitants of the western Sahara.

[Copyright Expatica News 2008]

Subject: Dutch news

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