YouTube to block Hong Kong protest anthem video after court order
MOUNTAIN VIEW/HONG KONG: (Reuters) Alphabet’s YouTube on Tuesday (May 14) said it would comply with a court decision to block access inside Hong Kong, China to 32 video links deemed prohibited content, in what critics say is a blow to freedoms in the financial hub amid a security clampdown.

The action follows a government application granted by Hong Kong’s Court of Appeal requesting the ban of a protest anthem called "Glory to Hong Kong." The judges warned that dissidents seeking to incite secession could weaponize the song for use against the state.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told a press briefing on Wednesday (May 15) that "putting a stop to the use or dissemination of the relevant song by anyone with the intention of inciting secession and insulting the national anthem is a legitimate and necessary measure by (Hong Kong) to fulfil its responsibility" to safeguard its "national security and national dignity".

In comments criticising the court order, YouTube said the ruling would raise skepticism around the Hong Kong government’s work to foster the digital economy and reclaim its reputation as a predictable place for doing business.

Hong Kong does not have an official anthem. "Glory to Hong Kong" was written in 2019 during widespread pro-democracy protests that year, becoming an unofficial alternative anthem to China’s "March of the Volunteers."