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Thailand Doesn't Ban Facebook After King Crop-Top Video

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Facebook Inc. (FB) came under pressure from Thailand's government on Tuesday to remove content deemed to be illegal from its servers, but the company has reportedly said it will not remove the content until it receives proper court warrants.

The government's moves to restrict Facebook comes a few weeks after a video that appeared to show the country's new king walking through a shopping mall in a crop top.

The 44-second video, which was widely shared on the Facebook site, appears to show King Maha Vajiralongkorn in a yellow crop top that exposed his tattooed back.

Thailand's ruling military junta, which seized power in a 2014 coup, has said it will ban Facebook if the social network giant did not block access to 131 "illicit posts" that were deemed inappropriate. This includes content violating lese-majeste laws, or laws that make it a crime to insult the royal family.

The Thai government had set a deadline of 10:00 am on May 16 for the pages to be blocked or face legal action, but Facebook continued to remain accessible in Thailand and it has not yet censored the pages, according to media reports.

However, Facebook said in a statement, "When we receive such a request, it is scrutinized to determine if the specified content does indeed violate local laws. If we determine that it does, then we make it unavailable in the relevant country or territory and notify people who try to access it why it is restricted."

Thailand had temporarily blocked Facebook in May 2014, one week after the military seized control of the country through a coup.

by RTT Staff Writer

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