MENLO PARK, Calif., May 27 (UPI) -- An Iranian judge has ordered Facebook CEO Mark Zukerberg to appear before the court because of privacy complaints against Instagram and WhatsApp.
Media reports are saying that the judge also ordered the two applications be taken down, and comes a week after another court ordered that the Instagram app be blocked. The U.S. has no extradition treaty with Iran, so chances that Zuckerberg will have to appear before the court are slim.
Iranian censors have also banned WhatsApp, a messaging service recently acquired by Facebook, because Zuckerberg is Jewish. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani stepped in to prevent the service for being blocked, but didn't do anything when WeChat was banned in December.
"The reason for this is the assumption of WhatsApp by the Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg, who is an American Zionist" said Iran's head of the Committee on Internet Crimes, Abdolsamad Khorramabadi, according to Israeli newspaper Haaretz.
While popular social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Youtube have been banned in Iran, highly-placed government officials have continued to use these sites as a medium to communicate with the West. Rouhani, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei all have Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts which are updated regularly.
The court order comes a week after another court ordered that six Iranian youths, who had posted a video of themselves dancing to Pharrell Williams' song Happy, be arrested for posting the "vulgar clip" and hurting public chastity.