Apple Has Started to Remove Iranian Apps Over Sanctions

Apple Has Started to Remove Iranian Apps Over Sanctions

In February, Apple told Iranian developers to remove any payment options in their apps to prevent Iranian money from entering the United States, a violation of the sanctions. Due to U.S. sanctions on Iran, companies like Apple are limited in the sorts of business they can do in the country, which is why the iPhone isn't legally sold in Iran and why there's no Iranian App Store.

The move prompted backlash from developers online, and lead to the creation of a #StopRemovingIranianApps on Twitter hashtag.

"Under the us sanctions regulations, the App Store can not host, distribute or do business with apps or developers connected to certain USA embargoed countries", Apple said in a statement to Iranian developers.

Salehi-Isfahani said there has already been much uncertainty about foreign investment, and Apple's removal of Iranian apps could be a sign that the company believes the accord may be in jeopardy.

In reaction to Apple's decision, Telecommunication Minister Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi, 34, said Apple should respect its Iranian consumers. We will follow up the cutting of the apps legally.

In January, Apple began removing several Iranian apps including DigiKala and Shaparak payment system app which Iranians use to skirt around restrictions banning U.S. companies from taking payments from Iran.

Officially, Apple has no presence in Iran.

Читайте также: South joint drills begin amid North Korea tensions

Apple's crackdown follows a similar wave of removals which targeted Chinese apps created to enable residents to evade censors and gain access to the global internet.

The apps which initially were removed were Delion (food delivery service), DigiKala (retailer), AloPeyk (parcel delivery service), Takhfifan (group buying website), and Alibaba (online travel agency).

Snapp was one of the apps the New York Times said was removed from the App Store.

NYT writes that due to the USA sanctions, Apple doesn't operate any official business in Iran or have an Iranian App Store.

Taghizadeh pointed out that while some Iranian apps had been removed, others were still available on App Store. He said some of the deleted apps were not associated with financial transactions, and some were registered in countries other than Iran due to sanctions.

They previously brought those apps to Apple's App Store, which Iranians accessed and used to download the programs.

Thomas Erdbrink and Vindu Goel are New York Times writers.

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