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Pakistan Blocks Access to YouTube in Internet Crackdown

Following the site's controversial competition to "draw Muhammed", Pakistan launched a countrywide ban on Facebook. Today YouTube has become the latest site to be banned in the country.

On Wednesday a Pakistani court ordered the ban on popular social networking site Facebook. Reports suggest that since the court order, some Wikipedia pages are now also being restricted from view.

YouTube has spoken out today on the matter stating that it is "looking into the matter and working to ensure that the service is restored as soon as possible"

Protests have begun across the country against the Facebook ban, while the company itself has simply stated that the competition content did not violate its terms.

The Pakistan Telecommunications Authority has stated that it only ordered internet service providers to "completely shut down" YouTube and Facebook in the country, after "all possible avenues" within its jurisdiction had been used.

Youtube spoke out today in response to the ban, stating: "YouTube offers citizens the world over a vital window on cultures and societies and we believe people should not be denied access to information via video.

"Because YouTube is a platform for free expression of all sorts, we take great care when we enforce our policies. Content that violates our guidelines is removed as soon as we become aware of it."

A hotline has been set up this week in Pakistan, requesting that members of the public phone in if they see offensive material anywhere.

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