"In order to protect national interests and to eliminate Telegram’s monopoly, the news portal of [Khamenei’s] office, responsible for the storage of Grand Ayatollah Hamenei’s publications in Telegram, ceases its activities from now on," Khamenei's office said, noting that this move was also aimed at supporting national messaging apps.
The Iranian authorities have taken several steps to limit Telegram’s activity in the country over company’s refusal to transfer its servers to Iran. On December 31, 2017, Tehran blocked the messenger amid nationwide protests in the country. The ban was lifted two weeks later, however, the Telegram's voice call service has remained blocked.
On Sunday, the Iranian Education Ministry issued a directive banning the use of foreign-made messaging apps, including Telegram, at the county’s public schools.
In 2017, Telegram founder and CEO Pavel Durov said that 40 million Iranian citizens used the app monthly, which makes it one of the most popular social networks in the country.