Google and YouTube spark outrage by BANNING vital North Korean videos from their websites

, and its parent company Google, made the decision to remove the channels which was met with anger from researchers desperate for a glimpse into the ultra-secretive nation.

Nonproliferation expert Joshua Pollack took to Twitter to criticise the move.

He said: “Basically, this hurts efforts to track activities of interest in a closed country — at the worst possible time.”

Tensions between and the US are close to erupting as aggressive rhetoric from Donald Trump is met with further provocative nuclear tests from Pyongyang.

Mr Pollack tweeted Google and YouTube saying: “We have a problem. Please restore North Korea-related channels ASAP. They are primary sources for researchers.”

Before they were deleted the online video channels carried clips from North Korea state TV and propaganda.

One of the channels on the popular social video website, Uriminzokkiri, had gathered millions of views from users.

A short message posted by YouTube claimed the site had been removed “due to a legal complaint”.

Footage carried on the Uriminzokkiri propaganda channel made worldwide news in 2013 after appearing to threaten the US by showing the White House in crosshairs and imagined an attack on the country.

North Korean analysts have previously scoured video footage from the channels for clues about ’s missiles and nuclear weapons.

Experts have hoped to understand what Pyongyang is telling its own people and what messages they wish to send to the rest of the world.

Researcher, Curtis Melvin, wrote an open letter to YouTube’s parent company Google to highlight the importance of the resource.

Mr Curtis’s letter read: “These North Korean videos are… indispensable sources of information for us on the outside.”

A YouTube spokesman: “We love that YouTube is a powerful platform for documenting events and shining light on dark corners around the world, but we must comply with the law.

“We disable accounts that repeatedly violate our community guidelines or terms of service and when we are required by law to do so.”

The channels did not have adverts so the cruel regime was not making any money from them, experts pointed out.

Mr Curtis, of the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University, suggested the action could be the result of harsh new sanctions drafted by the US and adopted by the UN could be to blame.

The sanctions will see North Korea banned from obtaining liquid natural gas and from exporting textile.

Daily Express :: World Feed

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