Jakim asks Muslims in Malaysia not to play Pokemon Go

Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia’s Islamic authority today asked Muslims in the country to refrain from playing the popular augmented game Pokemon Go, saying that it has negative impact on children and teenagers and will lead to accidents.

Department of Islamic Development (Jakim) Director General Othman Mustapha said the department supported the decision by the Federal Territories’ Islamic Legal Consultative Committee held on August 1.

The decision, announced by Federal Territory Mufti Zulkifli Mohamad al-Bakri, said it does not allow Muslims to engage with the game based on a variety of factors including its harmful effects.

“This decision is in line with the view of law in other Islamic countries proving Pokemon Go game causing harm leading to incidents that claimed lives. The game also has significant negative impact on children and teenagers,” he said in a statement on its Facebook page.

Othman said the recommendations to avoid the game is consistent with the Islamic rule of Saddu Al-Zara’i, which required prevention on things leading to damage or harm on oneself.