PM Gilani Orders Re-Opening of the Banned Networks in Pakistan

by Ferman Aziz

Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gillani ordered Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) to un block all banned social networking sites early Wednesday, Youtube was the first one to return. The news came after almost a week of ban on Facebook, Youtube, Wikipedia and several other web pages that reproduced the content that originated the ban. The ban was ordered by the Lahore High Court on the 19th of May when a case was filed demanding the ban because of an offensive Facebook group called ‘Draw Muhammad’ (PBUH) which invited users to draw caricatures of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) a figure given the utmost respect by Muslims all over the world. The ban came in to effect from 20th May, 2010.

The ban that increased the number of Twitter users in Pakistan was revoked on the 26th of May, 2010. It was made clear that from now on only the offensive pages and groups will be blocked and not the whole sites. Users flocked to their machines to get their fix of all that they had been missing and though all sites (like Facebook) were not immediately available, Youtube started running almost immediately.

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