10:40 GMT +323 July 2019
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    Muslim-Majority Bangladesh Blocks 20,000 Websites Under Anti-Porn Campaign

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    The crackdown came in response to a November high court order in Bangladesh asking the administration to block access to pornographic sites and put a lid of obscene content available online. The court issued directives on a petition filed by a civil society organisation seeking to tackle inappropriate online material.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) — Bangladesh's telecommunications minister on Tuesday announced that the government has blocked access to some 20,000 websites in the Muslim-majority country amid its ongoing war on pornography, according to media reports

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    To comply with the orders from the country's telecommunications regulator, internet service providers (ISPs) blocked access to pornographic and gambling websites last week.

    Telecoms Minister Mustafa Jabbar said "I want to create a safe and secure internet for all Bangladeshis, including children. And this is my war against pornography. And this will be a continuous war."

    Most of the sites are foreign-based, though a few local ones were also hit by the ban.

    Popular apps, such as TikTok and Bigo, were also on the receiving end of the government crackdown.

    An actress on Sunday was issued a reprimand by the authorities and was asked to pull down all provocative photos posted on her Facebook, Instagram and TikTok pages as part of the "war" against obscenity.

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    The general secretary of ISP association Emadudul Hoque said that although all orders have been complied with, users can still access porn through virtual private networks (VPNs) and mirror websites, saying "This is a continuous process and it needs regular monitoring. These websites are very well aware of the regulations and they come up with thousands of mirror sites every week."

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    Censorship, ban, porn, Dhaka, Bangladesh
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