Iraq blocks ‘all’ porn sites after years of faltering censorship efforts

2
iraq porn ban

The Iraqi government has said it will block all porn sites in the country, expanding its existing limitations on viewing explicit adult material.

Hiyam al-Yasiri, Iraq’s minister for communications, announced the move in early November 2022, according to The New Arab. The outlet said that porn sites were among the most popular kinds of sites visited in the conservative country before the ban.

The ministry has appointed a dedicated porn-blocking unit, which it said had already blocked 400 porn sites from being accessible from within Iraq. Of course, anyone with access to a virtual proxy network (VPN) app or service can still usually access banned sites.

According to SEMrush data, in September 2022 the top three most popular porn sites in Iraq were XNXX, followed by Pornhub and Xvideos. Each had tens of millions of visitors per month.

Iraq has made faltering attempts to block access to porn in recent years. In 2015 a bill designed to block porn access was introduced, but was never properly implemented. Then in 2019 Iraq’s parliament voted in favor of blocking porn in the country.

There have been more localized efforts to crack down on Iraqis accessing adult content, too. According to Ekurd Daily, in summer 2022 government officials in Iraq’s Kurdistan region told internet service providers to introduce “family packages” with integrated porn-blocking functions.

Iraq is by no means alone in its attempts to curb access to porn sites among its population, with many countries pushing for strict identity verification measures to help ensure that minors cannot access the material.

Read next: France and Germany are pushing ahead with porn crackdown over age verification measures

Affiliate Disclosure
Some articles contain affiliate links that allow us to earn money if you decide to purchase any of these products or services. This does not cost you any extra money, and it allows us to continue to run this website. Affiliate links have no relation to review ratings or other editorial coverage. You can read the full policy here.

Jamie F

Jamie F

Jamie is a freelance writer, contributing to outlets such as The Guardian, The Times, The Telegraph, CNN and Vice.

Be the first to leave a comment

Leave a reply