The Pakistan government threatened to do this at the beginning of the month if it didn’t filter or get rid of “sacrilegious” content. It’s currently unclear what the government wants removed from the site.
According to a Bloomberg report, Wikipedia has been censored in Pakistan due to “sacrilegious” content on the website. The government’s directive for the site to delete offensive information within 48 hours and the nation’s telecom regulator to “degrade” its services led to the suspension.
Although Bloomberg claims that Wikipedia is still in discussions with Pakistani authorities, it is not yet obvious what Wikipedia is being requested to delete. The charity in charge of Wikipedia, Wikimedia, didn’t answer right away when The Verge asked for a comment on the situation. The nation reportedly restricts websites with information it deems to be “blasphemous, anti-Islamic, or harmful to internal security,” according to data by the OpenNet Initiative.
In the past, Pakistan has restricted a number of important websites. Due to complaints about “immoral / obscene content” being uploaded on TikTok, it also banned TikTok for three years in 2020 and 2021.
Wikipedia has seen censorship and opposition from other nation-states in the past; the website even has a monitoring item about it. Russia threatened to stop the website if it didn’t alter content on a page discussing the nation’s invasion of Ukraine after a site editor was recently detained in Belarus. Wikipedia has previously been briefly restricted in Russia, as well as Turkey, China, and Myanmar, with other nations similarly restricting particular articles and information.