Twitter Now Enforces Pakistani Law?

Twitter flagged a tweet by Ensaf Haidar, wife of jailed Saudi blogger Raif Badawi, for violating Pakistani law.

After posting a picture of a woman in a face veil, Haidar tweeted “Retweet if you’re against niqab.”

In response to the tweet, Twitter’s legal team wrote Haidar a letter telling her she was “in violation of Pakistan law.”

Haidar posted the letter on Twitter, which provoked a social media storm deriding the social media giant.

“Since when is Pakistani law applicable to the rest of the world? tweeted journalist Nazrana Yousufzai.

Haidar herself responded, “Jack (Dorsey) [co-founder and CEO of Twitter] tries to silence everyone who tells the truth … while he acts blind on the Anti-Semitic and the hate speech in the Arab world! In the end @TwitterMENA is ran by some extreme radical staff and Jake know that well!”

Haidar’s husband, a liberal blogger, was arrested in 2012 and charged with “insulting Islam through electronic channels” for moderating an internet forum that encouraged participants to voice their opinion about religion in the kingdom.

He was also eventually charged with apostasy.

In 2013, he was convicted on several charges and sentenced to seven years in prison and 600 lashes. But in 2014, his sentence was increased to 10 years in prison, 1,000 lashes and a fine of $266,000. The flogging was to be carried out over 20 weeks, but after the first 50 lashes were publicly administered in January 2015, the next set was postponed.

Haidar fled Saudi Arabia with their children and took refuge in Canada after her life was threatened in the kingdom. She has tirelessly campaigned for his freedom ever since.

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