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Egypt's telecom ministry appeals against court-ordered YouTube blockade

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Innocence of Muslims
Innocence of Muslims

Earlier this month an Egyptian court ordered that YouTube be blocked for 30 days as punishment for hosting Innocence of Muslims, an anti-Islam video that prompted riots when it spread across the web last year. However, it seems cutting off access to the country's population of 79 million is too tall of a task for Egypt's telecommunications ministry. It's filed an appeal to the original court ruling citing the high technical costs that would come with carrying out a temporary YouTube blackout.

Advocacy group Association for Freedom of Thought and Expression (AFTE) has also appealed the February 9th court order, describing the request as "a collective punishment of all YouTube and Google service users." "Banning these websites will deprive internet users from the right of expressing themselves on those sites as well as depriving them of an important means of expression," the group said. Whether Egypt will actually follow through on the month-long ban has yet to be formally decided, but should it reverse course, it wouldn't be the first time the country has reneged on web censorship.