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Kuwait won't suspend BlackBerry service: report

Kuwait has asked BlackBerry maker Research In Motion to block pornographic sites though will not suspend services like other Gulf states have threatened to do, a local newspaper reported on Tuesday.

RIM has given "initial approval" to block 3,000 porn sites at the request of Kuwait's communications ministry, the al-Jarida daily said, quoting a source it did not identify by name.

It said the Canadian manufacturer asked the ministry to give it until the end of the year to implement the block.

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Separately, RIM has agreed to give India's security authorities the right to monitor e-mail sent and received on the smartphone, an Indian newspaper reported on Tuesday.

The al-Jarida report said security was also part of the Kuwaiti negotiations.

It said Kuwait was working with RIM and local telecom companies to reach a set of "legal controls that would guarantee national security on the one hand, and the rights of citizens use the device's services on the other."

The BlackBerry's coveted secrecy has come under scrutiny since Sunday, when the United Arab Emirates announced plans to ban BlackBerry Messenger, email and Web browser services from October 11.

The Gulf state cited national security and other concerns and said the move followed three years of unsuccessful negotiations with RIM.

Industry sources said Saudi Arabia had ordered local telecom companies to freeze BlackBerry Messenger from this month.

The Economic Times newspaper reported on Tuesday that RIM has offered to share with Indian security agencies its technical codes for corporate email services, open up access to all consumer emails within 15 days and also develop tools in six to eight months to allow monitoring of chats, the paper said, citing internal government documents.

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RIM will provide further details on its proposals to the Indian telecoms ministry on Tuesday, the newspaper said.

A RIM India spokesman had no immediate comment on the report while a Telecoms Ministry spokesman could not immediately be reached for comment.

Combined, the Gulf states and India represent more than two million BlackBerry users, or about 5 percent of the 41 million devices in service worldwide.

RIM's Nasdaq-listed shares fell as much as 2.7 percent before closing down 0.96 percent at $56.98 on Monday in New York, hurt in part by concerns over the risk that the UAE's ban might spread to other countries, according to analysts.

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