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Bangladesh lifts ban on YouTube after eight months

06.05.13_technewsrprt_img_stories_regina-timothy_samsung-youtube

On Wednesday, Bangladesh lifted a ban on popular video sharing website YouTube eight months after it was imposed to prevent the viewing of a defamatory video insulting Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) which sparked worldwide protests in 2012.

Talking to state-run BSS news agency a spokesman of Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) Sunil Kanti Bose said people in Bangladesh could now have access again to the YouTube.

The telecom regulator had blocked YouTube in Bangladesh on September 17 last year to prevent people from watching the 14-minute trailer made in California with private funding, on a film entitled Innocence of Muslims that was purported to mock Islam and Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and which sparked deadly protests claiming many lives.

Bose said the ban was lifted on Google’s assurance that they would filter the objectionable content.

“A cautionary note ‘it contains sensitive news, you may not open it’ will be displayed on the video Innocence of Muslims until it is fully filtered from the site,” Bose said.

The BTRC chief said Google also assured the regulator to install an independent server in Bangladesh as soon as possible..

Earlier this year Bangladesh constituted a cyber crime tribunal while works are underway to toughen laws as part of a series of steps to prevent exploitation of religion and defamation of Islam on the internet.

“We are amending the Right to Information Act and the Penal Code, toughening punitive measures for hurting people’s religious sentiments,” law minister Barrister Shafique Ahmad told a press conference two months ago.

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