Pakistan Says it Will Restore YouTube But Block Video Clips Muslims Find Offensive
May 27, 2010 - 1:06 AMPakistan's government says it will restore access to YouTube but will block videos offensive to Muslims that are posted on the video-sharing site. Facebook remains inaccessible over controversial images of Mohammed.
A number of high-profile websites were blocked in Pakistan last week over offensive content, such as a Facebook page that urges users to post images of Islam's prophet, Mohammed.
Many citizens supported the crackdown, but some questioned why entire sites were blocked rather than specific pages or videos.
The government seemed to move in that direction Wednesday by deciding it would restore access to YouTube but continue to block videos "displaying profane or sacrilegious material," said Najibullah Malik, the secretary at Pakistan's information technology ministry.
The government is issuing orders to Internet service providers to implement the decision, he said. YouTube was yet not available as of Wednesday evening in the capital.
Facebook is still blocked, and Malik said no decision on it would be made until a court hearing at the end of the month.
Most Muslims regard depictions of the prophet, even favorable ones, as blasphemous.
Large and sometimes violent protests erupted in Pakistan and other Muslim nations in 2006 when a Danish newspaper published cartoons of Mohammed, and again in 2008 when the cartoons were reprinted.
(Copyright 2010 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)