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    Tajikistan Blocks YouTube over Protests, Users Say

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    The Tajik authorities blocked access on Thursday to the video-sharing service YouTube in what is believed to be a response to uploaded videos showing protests against deadly militant clashes in eastern Tajikistan.

    The Tajik authorities blocked access on Thursday to the video-sharing service YouTube in what is believed to be a response to uploaded videos showing protests against deadly militant clashes in eastern Tajikistan.

    “Over the last several hours, I can’t find the necessary materials on the YouTube,” one Internet user told RIA Novosti.

    Users said the restrictions may be linked to the recent special operation near the city of Khorog against an armed group believed to be behind the murder of a senior Tajik security official.

    At least 30 militants were killed by Tajik security forces following the murder of Maj. Gen. Abdullo Nazarov, chief of the Tajikistan National Security Committee regional office, on June 21. Twelve Tajik law enforcers were reported to have died in the operation.

    The authorities said there were no casualties among civilians. But opposition media reported that some 30 civilians were killed.

    Residents in Khorog held a protest on July 23 demanding an end to the bloodshed in the mountainous region and restoration of transport infrastructure. Video of the protest was posted on YouTube.

    In early March Tajikistan shut down several web sites critical of President Emomali Rakhmon, including news web sites and Facebook. Eight days later the ban was lifted.

     

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