WhatsApp was acquired back in February in a deal worth $19 billion, and according to a recent report, it’s banned in Iran due to alleged racism.
Published this past Saturday by Haaretz, Israel’s oldest daily newspaper, the decision was made by the Committee for Determining Criminal Web Content.
Here’s what Committee Secretary Abdolsamad Khorramabadi reportedly said:
“The reason for this is the adoption of WhatsApp by the Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, who is an American Zionist.”
However, according to a conversation with the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA), Communications Minister Mahmoud Mehr said “The government is completely against the ban on WhatsApp.”
There appears to be a clear conflict of interest, and it’s worth noting that Facebook also owns Instagram, which continues to function in the country.
According to Haaretz, Iranians are still able to access WhatsApp through proxies, a method that proved reliable during Twitter’s recent ban in Turkey.
There’s absolutely no excuse for such idiotic behavior, and Jack Nicholson, as well as many others before him, said it best:
Facebook itself has been banned in Iran since 2009, and is likely another reason for the WhatsApp ban.
Photo credit: Álvaro Ibáñez