Cairo : A court in Egypt today ordered one of the most popular website YouTube to be blocked for a month forcarrying the objectionable 14-minute clip of the movie called “Innocence of Muslims”.
A judge of Cairo court, Hassouna Tawfiq ordered YouTube blocked for carrying the film, which he described as “offensive to Islam and the Prophet (Muhammad).”
The ruling however can be appealed, and based on precedent, might not be enforced. A spokeswoman for YouTube’s parent company, Google, said in a statement that the firm had “received nothing from the judge or government related to this matter.”
The court ruled the authorities must take measures to block access to the site for a month, after a complaint by an Egyptian who accused YouTube of being a “threat to social peace” by putting the US-made film on line.
The “Innocence of Muslims” sparked a wave of angry anti-American protests across the Middle East in which more than 30 people were killed.
YouTube, a subsidiary of US Internet giant Google, has been blocked in Pakistan since December for refusing to heed Islamabad’s call to remove the controversial video.
The site simply decided to restrict access to the film for Internet users in several countries, among them Egypt, Libya, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia.
On January 29, a Cairo court upheld death sentences passed on seven Egyptian Coptic Christians in absentia for their involvement in making the film.
Human rights lawyer Gamal Eid said, “This verdict shows that judges’ understanding of technology is weak.The judges do not realize that one wrong post on a website does not mean you have to block the entire website.”
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