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Viber Provides Free Calling To The 7 Countries Affected By Immigration Ban

Viber Provides Free Calling To The 7 Countries Affected By Immigration Ban Following Donald Trump's executive order banning immigrants and travelers coming from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten also joined the growing number of critics.

It has announced that Viber, its popular messaging app, will be providing free international calls to users located in the affected countries.

This was announced in a Twitter post by Hiroshi Mikitani, Rakuten's CEO, who also condemned the new Trump policy, stressing it is wrong to discriminate based on religion and nationality.

It is not yet clear if Rakuten and Viber also have employees directly affected by the blanket ban. Mikitani, however, already declared that both he and his company have unwavering commitments to support Muslim staff members.

How Viber Can Help


The free Viber calls could prove significant amid the current immigration landscape in the United States. It is similar to other instant messaging apps such as WhatsApp. However, aside from the text, audio, and video messaging features, it also has the capability to connect its users to landline and mobile phones around the world.

Unlike its main calling features, dialing phone lines through the company's Viber Out service is not free. It is charged per minute and is paid through Viber credits.

"In light of recent events in the United States, we are now offering free calls to any landline or mobile number between the United States and Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen so that those affected will now have one less barrier to cross when trying to reach their loved ones," Viber said.

Other tech companies have also swiftly responded to the immigration ban. Uber, for example, has already pledged as much as $3 million to ensure that affected employees have access to legal and immigration assistance.

Silicon Valley vs. Immigration Ban

Google and Lyft have also committed millions of dollars to help fund organizations that are challenging the Trump EO such as the American Civil Liberties Union. These companies also sent financial aid to agencies that are helping immigrants and refugees stranded or detained in U.S. soil.

The outpouring of financial support is not only limited to tech companies. Movers and shakers in Silicon Valley have also opened their wallets. These include angel investor Chris Sacca, Nest CEO Tony Fadell, and Stewart Butterfield, cofounder of Flickr and Slack.

The unprecedented mobilization of support has helped organizations achieve key milestones in the fight against the immigration ban. ACLU, for example, which raised a record $24 million in donation in the past weekend alone, has successfully persuaded a federal judge in New York to issue an emergency stay against the directive.
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