An Asian man in the United Arab Emirates faces deportation after a court in the country found him guilty of ‘insulting his friend’ on messaging service WhatsApp, local website Emirates247 reported.
A court in Umm Al Quwain reportedly convicted the man and ordered his deportation, following which he appealed the sentence.
However the emirate’s appeals court also found him guilty of insulting his friend by sending him abusive messages via WhatsApp and stayed the order.
“These offences are easily done through social networks but they include tough punishment…those who think of making such offences must think twice,” the report quoted chairman of the UAQ appeals court Ibrahim Al Ali as saying.
“The UAE is a country of institutions that respects the freedom and dignity of all people …it is an example in enforcing justice and preserving rights.”
The UAE has stringent laws governing social media usage in the country.
Last week, a Gulf national was sentenced to three years in prison and fined Dhs 50,000 by the UAE Federal Supreme Court after he was found guilty of insulting the country on WhatsApp.
He was charged with “disseminating information with a view to ridicule and damage the reputation of the state symbols”. He also allegedly ridiculed Emirati soldiers killed in Yemen, describing them as ‘cowards’ on WhatsApp.
He will be deported after serving his jail term in the country.