The Taliban imposed a ban on TikTok and PUBG on Thursday (April 21). PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) is a game, while TikTok is a popular video-sharing app. According to the Taliban, these apps are leading Afghanistan’s youth astray.
In a statement, the cabinet said the apps “led the young generation astray,” adding that the telecommunications ministry had been ordered to shut them down.
The apps are popular among Afghans who, since the Taliban took power in Afghanistan last year, have been left with few options for entertainment. Music, movies, and television soap operas have all been banned by the Taliban.
The regime has also ordered the ministry to prevent TV channels from broadcasting “immoral material,” despite the fact that little is broadcast other than news and religious content.
When the Taliban took power following the withdrawal of US forces in August of last year, they sought to reassure the international community that the regime would not be as hardline as the one that existed between 1996 and 2001. However, the Taliban have gradually imposed suffocating social restrictions, particularly on women.
Most girls’ secondary schools are still closed, and women are barred from many government jobs and from traveling abroad unless accompanied by an adult male relative.
According to DataReportal, an independent data collector, just over 9 million Afghans have access to the internet out of a total population of 38 million.
TikTok, a Chinese-owned app, has been shut down twice in Pakistan for allegedly “indecent” content.
The Taliban’s feared religious police outlawed recreational activities like kite flying and pigeon racing during their previous regime.