France has blocked five websites suspected of condoning terrorism and spreading hate speech, marking the first usage of new anti-terrorism powers approved by parliament last year that allow such bans without court orders.
“I do not want to see sites that could lead people to take up arms on the Internet,” French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said at a public meeting Monday.
“I make a distinction between freedom of expression and the spread of messages that serve to glorify terrorism. These hate messages are a crime,” he added. Internet service providers were given 24 hours to comply.