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Nepal has announced its decision to ban TikTok, citing the app’s misuse as a threat to the social lives of citizens.
The Minister for Communications and Information Technology, Rekha Sharma, confirmed on Monday that the cabinet agreed to the ban due to content on TikTok that disrupts social structures and relationships. Sharma noted that technical steps are being taken to implement the ban. This decision aligns with actions taken by other nations, some of which have partially or fully banned TikTok over security and misuse concerns.
The ban follows reports of over 1,600 TikTok-related cybercrime cases in Nepal over the past four years. Nepal Telecom Authority chief Purushottam Khanal informed that internet service providers are in the process of shutting down the app, with some already having done so. While TikTok has not yet commented on this specific ban, it has previously criticized similar actions as misguided and based on misconceptions.
This move comes shortly after Nepal introduced a directive requiring social media platforms to establish local offices.
TikTok, owned by Beijing-based ByteDance, is a globally popular social platform, particularly among younger users. The app has faced scrutiny and restrictions in various countries over data rules and its impact on youth, with neighboring India and Pakistan taking similar actions. Despite allegations of being influenced by Beijing, ByteDance has refuted claims of direct control by the Chinese government.