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No plans to ban Telegram in Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR, July 17: The Malaysian government does not intend to restrict the use of instant messaging application Telegram for now, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi on Sunday.

He was responding to questions about the Indonesian government’s decision to block all access to Telegram, following revelations that several forums hosted on the application were “full of radical and terrorist propaganda”.

Zahid said monitoring by Malaysian authorities so far found no evidence related to crime or terrorism as far as Telegram was concerned.

The Deputy Prime Minister said the government respects the rights of consumers in the country and does not intend to interfere with users who use Telegram to chat with their contacts.

“The KDN’s (Home Ministry’s) observation, especially by the Anti-Terrorism Unit and the Special Branch of the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM), find that the application (Telegram) has so far not been used in matters related to crime or for recruiting or raising funds for terrorism activities,” Zahid said.

He added that the government would continue to monitor the use of social media applications to detect suspicious activities.

Telegram founder Pavel Durov on Sunday said the application would shut down “terrorist-related” public channels, following the Indonesian government’s decision to block access to the platform.–Agencies

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