Video sharing website YouTube has been banned in Pakistan after the management of the site refused to take down blasphemous videos from its domain.
Blasphemous video clips of the movie "Innocence of Muslims" are still present on YouTube and for that reason, the government of Pakistan has blocked access to YouTube.com throughout the country. The blasphemous movie has caused worldwide retaliation by the Muslims, as it targets their faith and belittles their religion.
The order to ban YouTube was given by Pakistan's Prime Minister Raja Parvez Ashraf. He issued strict instructions to the Ministry of Information Technology, which is responsible for internet regulation, to block YouTube and all other websites that still host the movie's clips on their domains. This decision was taken after YouTube refused the request of the government of Pakistan to take down the blasphemous video clips.
The prime minister said that YouTube shall remain banned in Pakistan till the blasphemous material is removed from the site. He said that such blasphemy will not be tolerated at any cost.
The Supreme Court of Pakistan is also investigating the matter and for that a three-member bench has been constituted. A letter was sent by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) to YouTube, requesting the company to take down the blasphemous video clips. However, YouTube refused and said that it does not have any agreement with the government of Pakistan and that it supports freedom of speech.
Expressing inability to remove the video, YouTube said, according to a report by pakistantoday.com, “This can be a challenge because what’s OK in one country can be offensive elsewhere. This video – which is widely available on the web – is clearly within our guidelines and so will stay on YouTube. However, we’ve restricted access to it in countries where it is illegal such as India and Indonesia as well as in Libya and Egypt, given the very sensitive situations in these two countries. This approach is entirely consistent with principles we first laid out in 2007.”
"Innocence of Muslims" is causing quite an uproar in a number of Muslim countries, and due to it, the American ambassador to Libya was also killed.