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YouTube Pulls Torture Videos


YouTube has suspended the account of Wael Abbas, an Egyptian anti-torture activist, and has pulled his videos:

CAIRO, Nov 27 (Reuters) – The video-sharing Web site YouTube has suspended the account of a prominent Egyptian anti-torture activist who posted videos of what he said was brutal behaviour by some Egyptian policemen, the activist said.

Wael Abbas said close to 100 images he had sent to YouTube were no longer accessible, including clips depicting purported police brutality, voting irregularities and anti-government demonstrations. YouTube, owned by search engine giant Google Inc <GOOG.O>, did not respond to a written request for comment. A message on Abbas’s YouTube user page,, read: “This account is suspended.”

“They closed it (the account) and they sent me an e-mail saying that it will be suspended because there were lots of complaints about the content, especially the content of torture,” Abbas told Reuters in a telephone interview. Abbas, who won an international journalism award for his work this year, said that of the images he had posted to YouTube, 12 or 13 depicted violence in Egyptian police stations.

YouTube, however, still has up videos like this one of Abu Ghraib. A quick search of YouTube’s archives for “torture” produces thousands of submissions. Why were these particular videos pulled and who were the ones complaining?


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