ISLAMABAD: YouTube, one of the world’s largest online video services, encountered disruptions in Pakistan, an Internet outage tracker said on Monday, ahead of former prime minister Imran Khan’s speech at a rally in the country’s northwest.
Internet users complained of experiencing disruptions in YouTube service across the country Monday evening as they were unable to log on to the video database.
NetBlocks, a monitor that tracks network shutdowns worldwide, confirmed reports of YouTube disruptions in Pakistan.
“Confirmed: Metrics corroborate reports of a new disruption to YouTube in #Pakistan; the incident comes as former PM Imran Khan appears on screen to live stream a speech on the platform, following a pattern observed in August #PeshawarJalsa,” the monitor said on Twitter.
The disruptions in YouTube service came minutes before ex-PM Khan, who has been increasingly critical of the country’s government and the powerful military establishment, arrived at the venue of his public meeting in the northwestern city of Peshawar.
Khan, who was ousted from power in a no-trust vote in April, recently said the government of PM Shehbaz Sharif was delaying fresh polls in the country as it was hoping to appoint an army chief of its own choice to save its leaders from graft cases.
Any “strong and patriotic” officer on that position would ask members of the ruling coalition about the ill-gotten wealth, the former premier argued at a rally in Faisalabad on September 4.
Khan’s statement wasn’t well-received by the country’s military, which said it was “aghast” at the “defamatory and uncalled for” remarks by the former prime minister.
Since his ouster in April, Khan and his supporters have openly expressed resentment that the army and its chief, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, did not block the opposition’s bid to topple his government, and are not supporting his moves, including regular public rallies across the country, to get snap elections announced.
Civilian-military-discord has been the source of tension throughout 75-year history of Pakistan, where army’s mediation has in the past offered a face-saving way to governments and opposition parties.