A BAHRAINI MP is calling for the blocking of websites such as the social network Facebook, which he says is corrupting the morals of Bahraini youngsters.
MP Abdul Haleem Murad said such websites were against Islamic teachings and should be closed in addition to others where women posted their pictures and information.
"I am against anything that is against our religion, culture and traditions. We shouldn't have women posting their pictures on these websites, with their information and names for everybody to see," he said.
The MP said that websites like Facebook, which had gained tremendous popularity among young Bahrainis, were not in line with the country's religion and traditions.
"We spoke to the Information Ministry in March and it promised that the Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (TRA) would set up a mechanism to regulate such websites," he told the GDN.
Mr Murad said these websites might have detrimental effect on youngsters, because access was easy due to having a computer connected to the Internet in almost every room in the house.
"A lot of these youngsters enter some of these websites by mistake, when they receive e-mails with links and they open them not knowing what these websites contain. This can turn into an addiction to these immoral websites."
Countries around the world are spending millions to protect their youth, such as Saudi Arabia where they ban such websites as well as China, said Mr Murad.
"They know that youth are the pillars of their country and they are the ones who will develop it in the future, so it is important to protect them.
Bahraini psychiatrist Dr Charlotte Kamel said websites such as Facebook were used because it was easier to interact using new technology and then meeting people face to face.
"This is especially true for people who have social phobias and suffer from shyness.
"If these websites are not used wrongfully, it is a good way to communicate and stay in touch with your friends.
"However, personal photos and information should not be uploaded so they cannot be used wrongfully by sick-minded people."
Dr Kamel, who is a fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrics, UK, said she had treated a lot of patients addicted to the Internet, mostly young people in their 20s.
"These patients wouldn't move from their computer screens all day. It is an addiction. People suffering from any type of addiction usually lack something in their lives and should seek treatment," she said.
Dr Kamel said patients suffering from addiction should be examined to find out what they were lacking in life that caused the addiction.