The blacklisting of Wikipedia comes days after the Pakistan Telecom Authority (PTA) degraded Wikipedia services for 48 hours, threatening to block it if the content deemed ‘blasphemous’ was not deleted
Pakistan has blocked Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, for its failure to remove offensive or blasphemous material, the country’s telecommunication authority said on Saturday. The blacklisting of Wikipedia comes days after the Pakistan Telecom Authority (PTA) degraded Wikipedia services for 48 hours, threatening to block it if the content deemed ‘blasphemous’ was not deleted.
PTA spokesperson Malahat Obaid said the ban had primarily been imposed for non-compliance with the orders. “The decision can be reviewed once Wikipedia removes sacrilegious content that has been identified by the regulatory authority,” the spokesperson added. An opportunity for a hearing was also provided; however, the platform neither complied by removing the blasphemous content nor appeared before the authority.
Pakistan also blocked the video-sharing app TikTok several times in recent years over its failure to stop posting “indecent” and “immoral” content. Blasphemy is a sensitive issue in Muslim-majority Pakistan.
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