Pakistan's PM orders YouTube halt over anti-Islam film

ISLAMABAD Mon Sep 17, 2012 11:52pm IST

A Shi'ite Muslim wears a headband during a protest march towards the U.S. Consulate during an anti-American protest rally organized by the Imamia Students Organization (ISO) and Majlis-e-Wahdat-e-Muslimeen (MWM) in Karachi September 16, 2012. REUTERS/Akhtar Soomro

A Shi'ite Muslim wears a headband during a protest march towards the U.S. Consulate during an anti-American protest rally organized by the Imamia Students Organization (ISO) and Majlis-e-Wahdat-e-Muslimeen (MWM) in Karachi September 16, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Akhtar Soomro

Related Topics

A statue of Ganesh, the deity of prosperity, is carried in a taxi to a place of worship on the first day of the ten-day-long Ganesh Chaturthi festival in Mumbai August 29, 2014. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui

Ganesh Chaturthi Festival

During Ganesh Chaturthi idols will be taken through the streets in a procession accompanied by dancing and singing, and will be immersed in a river or the sea in accordance with Hindu faith.  Slideshow 

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistani Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf ordered the suspension of YouTube in the country on Monday over a video made in the United States which mocks the Prophet Mohammad and has enraged the Islamic world.

The move came hours after police fired in the air to disperse a crowd headed towards the U.S. Consulate in the city of Karachi to protest against the amateurish film.

Ashraf's office said in a statement that the Ministry of Information had been ordered to block YouTube so that the video could not be viewed.

"The direction has been given after YouTube refused to heed to the advice of the government of Pakistan to remove blasphemous material from its site," said Ashraf's office.

"The prime minister said that blasphemous material would not be tolerated and the services of YouTube would remain suspended till removal of blasphemous material."

Muslims in Pakistan and elsewhere around the world have been seething over the video posted on the Internet under several titles including "Innocence of Muslims".

Protesters on motorcycles and in cars headed towards the U.S. Consulate in Pakistan's biggest city and commercial hub Karachi, prompting police to shoot in the air and fire teargas.

Protesters threw rocks at the police and damaged one of their vehicles. Around 100 people roamed roads and alleys near the sprawling consulate.

A senior police official said 30 students had been arrested.

Protests erupted in several Pakistani cities over the weekend.

In Lahore on Monday, protesters threw rocks at police and burned an American flag near the U.S. Consulate in images broadcast live on local television channels. Police official Rai Tahir said six policemen and some protesters were hurt.

"We used teargas and a baton charge," said Tahir. "We managed to push them back."

The U.S. Embassy in Islamabad said it had suspended public services due to the potential for demonstrations near the compound.

Pakistan's U.S.-backed government faces a Taliban insurgency supported by al Qaeda and other militant groups.

(Reporting by Imtiaz Shah in KARACHI and Mubasher Bokhari in LAHORE; Writing by Michael Georgy; Editing by Angus MacSwan)

FILED UNDER:
We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (1)
northeast78 wrote:
Muslims should get over themselves.
It’s a film.
How many other films out there could cause offense.
You should be ashamed of you actions.
There is no excuse for how Muslims around the world have acted.

Sep 17, 2012 2:04am IST  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Diplomacy

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Pakistan Protests

Pakistan Protests

Pakistani opposition to press on with protests until Sharif resigns.  Full Article 

Book Talk

Book Talk

Reema Abbasi and a glimpse of Pakistan’s Hindu past  Full Article 

Ukraine Crisis

Ukraine Crisis

Putin calls for talks on east Ukraine "statehood"; Kremlin denies endorsing independence.  Full Article 

India Economy

India Economy

India better prepared for U.S. Fed rate hike - Rajan.  Full Article 

Premier League

Premier League

Irresistible Liverpool trounce Spurs, Villa win.  Full Article 

Hong Kong Democracy

Hong Kong Democracy

Hong Kong braces for protests as China rules out full democracy.  Full Article 

Pacemaker Technology

Pacemaker Technology

Clockwork heart pacemaker does away with batteries  Full Article 

India this week

India This Week

A collection of our best pictures from India  Slideshow 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage