Afghanistan's government on Thursday ordered the banning of the YouTube site in its country, in an attempt to head off people from watching the controversial anti-Islam film produced in the US, reported dpa.
"We have decided to ban YouTube in Afghanistan. We have started shutting down YouTube website, there are more than 40 internet providers and all have been asked to block YouTube," said Aimal Marjan, an official with the communications ministry.
An apparent protest over the film outside the US consulate in Benghazai, Libya, this week escalated into a full-on assault on the building, which saw the US ambassador and three other US staff killed.
"The shutdown has begun this afternoon, they (Ministry of Culture) asked us today to block the website until further notice," Marjan added.
"The decision came through the culture ministry to prevent people from watching a movie in which our prophet was desecrated and is an attempt to stop any possible protests," another official, who spoke on conditin of anonymity, said.
The film, Innocence of Muslims, which was largely unknown before Tuesday, was allegedly made by a US-Israeli real estate developer named Sam Bacile, according to the Wall Street Journa - although that has been called into question.
US pastor Terry Jones, who previously sparked riots across the world by burning copies of the Koran, has also said he will promote the film.