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Ban On Popular Telegram App Not To Be Lifted In Iran

Telegram application icon on Apple iPhone X screen close-up. Telegram app icon. Telegram is the most popular messaging app in Iran. File

The National Iranian Cyberspace Center has denied reports about the lifting of the ban on popular social networking application Telegram.

A statement issued by the center on Thursday October 10 says rumors on social media about the lifting of the ban on Telegram are not true.

Telegram, which had close to 40 million users in Iran was banned in early 2018 after mass anti-government protests nationwide. Messaging apps are used to inform people about protests. Iran has also blocked Facebook and thousands of websites, some for political reasons.

During the past week, a post attributed to the Chief of High Council of Cyberspace Abolhassan Firouzabadi said that ban was to be lifted. Firouzabadi has denied posting the tweet that promised ending the ban on Telegram.

The rumors on lifting the ban on Telegram started when the Judge who had ruled last year that the social networking service should be banned, was arrested last week on charges of financial corruption.

Regardless of the ban, Telegram is still the most popular social networking platform retaining most of its users according to official figures. Iranians routinely use proxies and VPNs to get access to free internet.