Google refuses to remove Saudi woman-tracking app Absher

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New Delhi | Published: March 5, 2019 9:29:29 AM

Google has refused to remove the controversial Saudi government app Absher which allows men to track and control women.

Google, absher, apple absher, saudi arabia, saudi women, women in saudi arabia, women drivers in saudi arabia, women situation, absher app, absher mobile appm, absher tracking app, abshar name meaning in urdu, google. apple, saudi men controlling womenGoogle has refused to remove the controversial Saudi government app Absher which allows men to track and control women.
(Image source: Reuters)

Google has decided to continue hosting the controversial Saudi Arabian app Absher in the Google Play store following the findings that the app was not breaching its terms of service.

As per Fortune, Senator Ron Wyden from Oregon, who had sent a separate letter to Google and Apple had said, ”American companies should not enable or facilitate the Saudi government’s patriarchy.”

Both tech giants, Google and Apple came under heavy scrutiny in February when 14 members of the Congress sent a letter to Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Apple CEO Tim Cook demanding the companies to discontinue hosting the controversial Saudi Arabian app as it bolsters Saudi laws which allow men to control the movements of women. Both Apple and Google initiating internal investigations into the app.

Google told the office of Congresswoman Jackie Speier, who is one of the letter signatories, that their probe concluded that the app did not violate any of its agreements. However, the investigation by Apple still continues on the subject.

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Google told the office of California Democrat Representative Jackie Speier, who had called for the removal of the app called “Absher”, that the app does not violate its terms of service, as per a report in the Business Insider published on Sunday.

The US Representatives Speier, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, along with 11 others had demanded that Google and Apple must remove the app.

Speier later called Google’s response “deeply unsatisfactory”, report say.

Amnesty International too has also criticised both tech giants for hosting the contraversial app on their platforms.

Absher, which is also sponsored by the Saudi government, lets its citizens accomplish an array of bureaucratic tasks including renewing driver’s licenses, male guardians allowing women to seek a job; the latter is legally required in the desert country.

While Saudis maintain that the app helps finishing bureaucratic tasks without much effort, American lawmakers disagree.

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