Employees at Lebanon's telecom ministry and representatives from one of the two state-owned mobile phone operators apparently enforcing the ban confirmed there was a directive to block the app, but declined to identify the source of the request.
Grindr has not yet made an official comment. The ban has raised concerns among internet freedoms activists regarding the process of blocking websites and apps in Lebanon. Usually, a court order is required but in the case of Grindr there isn't one, which suggests the decision could have been made secretly and extrajudicially.
The Beirut-based Social Media Exchange SMEX , an internet freedoms and privacy group, has flagged the issue and launched an online campaign under the hashtag GrindrLebBan to get to the bottom of the apparent ban. SMEX has counted up to 50 sites and apps being blocked in Lebanon, many of them are linked to solicitation of sex work and online gambling in Lebanon, although Grindr does not fit into either of these categories.
Article of the penal code, which punishes "any sexual intercourse contrary to the order of nature" with up to one year in prison remained unchanged, despite a groundbreaking ruling by a district court of appeal last year that consensual sex between people of the same sex is not unlawful. Read Also.
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The New Arab Lebanon hasn't delivered on long-awaited rights reforms: The New Arab Comments. Most Popular. Loading Next Article Read More. Sign up to get this in your inbox every week Submit.
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