Google shuts down Taliban app used for recruitment

The Taliban has had an app removed from the Google Play Store, with the app’s content presumably contravening Google’s user policy.

The Taliban app removed from the Google Play Store was in the Pashto language, and it featured things like official statements by the group, or promotional videos.

It was “part of our technological efforts to make a more global audience”, according to a Taliban spokesperson on Bloomberg.

The app was featured on the Google Play Store on 1 April, before being removed a day later due to what the Taliban called “technical issues” – the BBC, though, reported that Google made the decision to remove the app.

It has since been reported that Google’s decision was because the app violated its policy by promoting hate speech and violence, with the developer account that uploaded the app thought to be suspended, too.

“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,” said Google in a statement, without naming any specific groups, or, indeed, apps.

Site Intel Group, an organisation that monitors online Jihadist activity, first spotted the app. Back in 2011, the Taliban joined Twitter with the @alemarahweb handle.

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