Google removes Taliban’s app from its Play Store

Google removes Taliban’s app from its Play Store

Alphabet Inc.’s Google has removed an app “Pashto Afghan News – alemarah” from its Play Store after it was discovered by the US-based SITE Intel Group, on Friday. The Group reported about the app, as they found it dangerous for peace and harmony.

Google declined to comment on this issue but said, “While we don’t comment on specific apps, we can confirm that we remove apps from Google Play that violate our policies. Our policies are designed to provide a great experience for users and developers. That's why we remove apps from Google Play that violate those policies.”

A militant Islamism researcher at the European University Institute Tore Hamming told The Guardian that the app was launched in Pashto. This indicates that the local Pashtun population is the main audience and it could thus be perceived as an attempt to bolster its support in eastern Afghanistan where IS -- especially in Nangarhar and Paktika --is pushing for control.

Jawid Kohistani, an independent Kabul-based security analyst, said, “The app will help Taliban to further psychologically weaken Afghanistan by their propaganda reports.”

A spokesman for the Afghan Interior Ministry, Sediq Sediqqi said that he wasn’t aware of the Taliban app.

A spokesman for the Taliban told Bloomberg that it is part of our advanced technological efforts to make more global audience, but it had been removed due to technical issues.


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