February 26, 2024
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Netflix has recently removed an episode of Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj from Saudi Arabia after complaints from the Saudi government, according to a report from Financial Times.

The second episode of the show criticized Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the government’s reaction to the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

According to the reports Saudi government told Netflix that the episode violated its cybercrime laws and requested its removal. The cited law effectively states that criticizing the government through any kind of digital medium is a criminal act.

Now Netflix has removed the episode from its service in Saudi Arabia. But it can still be viewed on the series YouTube channel for those living in the country, according to FT. The episode is still available on Netflix in other countries.

Pulling the episode is an an affront to freedom of expression said Jillian C. York, a director at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, told FT.

Netflix said its decision to take down the episode is similar to what other US-based companies would have done, complying with local laws.

The show host Hasan Minhaj has not said anything regarding the matter at the moment.

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