Google says its Chinese searches were redirected to Baidu

It's happened before, Google says, and service will be restored soon

Google said it has received reports that searches done in China on its Chinese search engine, Google.cn, have been blocked and redirected to other sites.

"While this is clearly unfortunate, we've seen this happen before and are confident that service will be restored to our users in the very near future," a Google spokesman said in an e-mail.

Bloggers have reported that domains containing the word "search" in China were hijacked and redirected to Baidu, a Chinese language Internet search provider.

The reports claim that users trying to reach Google, Yahoo and Microsoft search engines from within China or through Chinese ISPs were redirected to Baidu. Some bloggers have accused Baidu of hijacking the traffic, while others put the blame on the Chinese government, claiming the government is angry that the U.S. gave an award to the Dalai Lama. Baidu could not be reached for comment.

"Even some more exotic pages, like www.search.ibm.com.cn, were suffering from this hijacking. According to a source, which I will keep anonymous here, the problem started around 1 a.m. Beijing time on Wednesday," according to Google Blogoscoped, which added that it was receiving reports that YouTube was also being blocked in China.

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