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UAE minister lets rip at Etisalat via Twitter

Sheikh Abdullah slams telecoms operator following deluge of mobile spam

UAE minister lets rip at Etisalat via Twitter
The UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs took to Twitter to complain about spam SMS from Etisalat.

A top ranking UAE minister took to social networking site Twitter to vent his frustration at Etisalat, the telecoms operator that itself is part-owned by the Gulf state's government.

The UAE's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, expressed his dissatisfaction with customer service at Etisalat after he received a wave of unsolicited text messages from the service provider.

"I ask Etisalat to please relieve us from advertisement texts and news services' messages, which I have asked to be stopped on my phone," Sheikh Abdullah initially 'tweeted', in Arabic.

Twitter is a popular online social networking site that allows users to broadcast short messages over the internet.

Based on his number of 'followers', or people that regularly read his tweets, Sheikh Abdullah's posts were seen by approximately 190,000 web users.

Soon after he followed the post up with: "I just received this message now: ‘Dear customer, thank you for subscribing to Reuters News Service. You will soon receive the latest updates from Reuters to your phone.' I did not subscribe."

Minutes later, he again tweeted: "I apologise to Etisalat but I will tweet every message I receive until they stp this inconvenience."

After another 15 minutes, the minister said he had received yet another text from the telecoms operator thanking him for subscribing to Al Jazeera's news service.

According to the Sheikh's Twitter feed, he was still being spammed hours later, and even a personal phone call to Etisalat CEO Saleh Al Abdooli had failed to rectify the issue.

Etisalat eventually responded to the minister via the company's own official Twitter feed. "Good evening, your highness. We have received confirmation on cancelling the SMS service. Please inform us in case the issue persists."

Sheikh Abdullah has not reported any issues since.

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