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Kuwait to block Youtube over anti-Muslim videos

Categories: Kuwait, Advocacy, Law

Update: YouTube Ban Lifted [1].


Scan of the memo. Source: Aljarida.com [3]

The Kuwait Ministry of Communications has issued an order to local ISPs denying access to Youtube [3] due to video content considered offensive to Muslims [4] and Islam. Here is a translation by Reuters [4]:

Since the website displays the Koran in the form of songs sung with the oud (stringed instrument) … and displays disrespectful pictures of the Prophet Mohammad … please proceed with immediate effect in blocking the website www.youtube.com

According to Aljarida.com [3], Youtube users activities represent 15% of all the internet traffic in Kuwait. The Kuwait Times reports [5] that “A search of the word ‘Kuwait’ turned up 59,000 videos [on Youtube], including everything from videos of car crashes on Fahaheel Expressway and Jessica Simpson's concert for US troops in Kuwait to protests in front of Abdullah Al-Salem hall in the run up to the 2006 parliamentary elections.

Youtube is being blocked in Tunisia, Turkey and Syria. See our Access Denied Map [6] for more information about web 2.0 censorship and anti-censorships efforts.