Saudi Cleric extends edict to ban 'Pokemon Go'

By Daniel Uria
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RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, July 20 (UPI) -- A cleric in Saudi Arabia has extended a 15-year-old edict banning Pokemon to include the new smartphone game Pokemon Go.

The law known as fatwa no. 21,758 which established a ban on Pokemon in 2001 was reaffirmed by the General Secretariat of the Council of Senior Religious Scholars, according to USA Today.


Although Pokemon Go has not been officially released in the region, Sheikh Saleh Al-Fozan said the Augmented Reality smartphone game is the same as the other games in the franchise.

According to the Times of Israel the law states that the Pokemon games promote gambling as well as belief in Darwinism and belief in practices such as the Shinto religion of Japan, Christianity, Freemasonry and "global Zionism."

"The symbols and logos of devious religions and organizations are used [including] the six-pointed star: You rarely find a card that does not contain such a star. It is associated with Judaism, the logo and sign of the State of Israel, and the first symbol of the Masonry organizations in the world," the fatwa states.

Other countries including Egypt have also banned the game claiming it makes "people look like drunkards in the streets" and can is being used as a form of espionage.


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