YouTube said on Tuesday that it would comply with a court order to block users in Hong Kong from viewing a popular democracy anthem, raising concerns about free speech and highlighting the increasing fraught environment for tech companies operating in the Chinese territory.

Last week, a Hong Kong court granted a government request to ban the song, “Glory to Hong Kong,” listing 32 links to videos on YouTube. Judges said the song was a “weapon” that could be used to undermine national security.

The court said the injunction was “necessary to persuade” technology companies to “remove” the songs from their platforms.

A representative of YouTube said in a statement that the company would “continue to consider” an appeal of the court’s ruling but would comply with the order.

“We are disappointed by the court’s decision but are complying with its removal order by blocking access to the listed videos for viewers in Hong Kong,” the representative said.

Like most tech companies, Google has a policy of removing or restricting access to material that is deemed illegal by a court in certain countries or places.


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