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Twitter unblocks accounts in Pakistan after censorship row

Social media website, Twitter, has unblocked numerous accounts and tweets that it had censored in Pakistan.

Last month, the country's telecoms authority complained of "blasphemous" and "unethical" content, much of which mocked Islam.

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In keeping with the website's policy on offensive material, the tweets and accounts were made unavailable in Pakistan, before being reinstated this week after the authorities had not followed up its complaint with further evidence.

Twitter publicised the recent developments through Chilling Effects, a website that catalogues cease-and-desists orders on the Internet.

"On May 18, 2014, we made an initial decision to withhold content in Pakistan based on information provided to us by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority," Twitter informed the website.

"Consistent with our longstanding policies we provided notice to all of the affected account holders and published the actioned takedown requests on Chilling Effects to maximise transparency regarding our decision.

"We have re-examined the requests and, in the absence of additional clarifying information from Pakistani authorities, have determined that restoration of the previously withheld content is warranted."

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The micro-blogging site began blocking tweets in specific countries back in 2012 in a move that was widely criticised by freedom-of-speech organisations, such as Reporters Without Borders. The Pakistan government briefly blocked access to the site in 2012 after complaints regarding anti-Islamic material.

The Pakistan complaints are not the only country-specific restriction imposed by the site. Current bans that are still in place, include German restrictions against a neo-Nazi account and a ban in France against a string of homophobic tweets.