Netflix Drops ‘Patriot Act’ Episode After Saudi Govt Complains
Streaming giant Netflix has pulled an episode of comedian Hasan Minhaj’s show Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj from its platform for viewers in Saudi Arabia at the behest of the country’s government, though it is still available on YouTube. The episode in question was critical of the current regime which is led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
This decision follows a legal request that Netflix reportedly received from Saudi Arabia’s Communications and Information Technology Commission citing grounds that the episode violated the kingdom’s anti-cyber crime law.
The platform has issued a statement that says:
"Clearly, the best way to stop people from watching something is to ban it, make it trend online, and then leave it up on YouTube,” Hasan Minhaj tweeted in response to the news. He also urged his followers to donate in aid of the humanitarian crisis that has emerged out of the ongoing war in Yemen.
The episode examined the growing power of the Crown Prince with Minhaj referring to the murder of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi and Mohammed bin Salman’s alleged role in the killing. He also urged tech companies in the US to stop taking funding from the kingdom.