New Delhi: Global social media giants like Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, YouTube, must set up an office in Islamabad and appoint a point-person for Pakistan. Otherwise, social media sites will be blocked in the country.

The rules also state that social media companies “shall remove, suspend or disable access to such accounts, online content of citizens of Pakistan residing outside its territorial boundaries and posts on online content that are involved in spreading of fake news or defamation.”

The new rules on social media are described by the authors as intended to prevent live streaming of online content relating to “terrorism, extremism, hate speech, defamation, fake news, incitement to violence and national security.”

Effectively, the government will be able to stifle dissent as it reserves the right to ask the platforms to remove any post. When required, the companies will be required to provide subscriber information, contents data and any other information.