Pakistani PM asks Facebook to ban Islamophobic content

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Pakistan's prime minister Imran Khan. Photo: AFP via Getty
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Pakistan's prime minister has written a letter to Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg seeking a ban on Islamophobic content on the site, warning of an increase in radicalisation among Muslims, the government said on Sunday.

In the letter, shared by the Pakistani government on Twitter, Imran Khan said that "growing Islamophobia" is encouraging extremism and violence across the world – especially through social media platforms such as Facebook.

"I would ask you to place a similar ban on Islamophobia and hate against Islam for Facebook that you have put in place for the Holocaust," Mr Khan said.

Facebook said this month it was updating its hate speech policy to ban any content that denied or distorted the Holocaust.

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Facebook did not immediately reply to Reuters' request for comment on Khan's letter.

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"One cannot send a message that while hate messages against some are unacceptable, these are acceptable against others," Mr Khan said, adding that this was "reflective of prejudice and bias that will encourage further radicalisation".

Mr Khan in his letter made reference to the situation in France, where, he said, Islam was being associated with terrorism.

Earlier on Sunday, Mr Khan said that French president Emmanuel Macron had "attacked Islam" by encouraging the display of cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammad.

Mr Khan's comments came after Mr Macron paid tribute to a French history teacher beheaded by an Islamist radical who wanted to avenge the use of cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammad in a class on freedom of expression.

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