I'm living in Middle Eastern country (Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan), can I play online poker?
Sure you can! And with our help will become easier, but of course, is going to depend on the country you reside now. Legally speaking, it is forbidden to play poker in most of the Middle Eastern countries. It depends on the country of course, but as a general rule, it is not legal to play and major poker networks are not available. Please contact us, so we can give you detailed information about your country gaming regulation and give you guidance about how to play online poker from Middle Eastern countries.
How about Iran? Can I play online poker from Iran
Iran has more restrictive laws about online poker and in general about betting. But, we need to be straight: most of the laws that affects public acts, like drinking in the streets and playing poker in a casino (of course, there are no legal casinos in Iran), but, it seems that the government doesn't pay that much attention to private activities, bottom line, you may drink and play poker but in your house only.
In Iran, we can only recommend doing money transactions using Bitcoin, as regular payment methods like Skrill and Neteller are not functional in Iran.
Top poker sites for Iranian players
Since every gambling activity had been declared illegal after 1979, the majority of land-based casinos have been closed. This encouraged a few offshore poker sites to accept Iranian players, although such platforms can not be called flexible enough in terms of available payment methods. Apart from the payments options, to give you the list of best Iranian poker sites, we considered the following aspects:
- High accessibility. You don’t have to use any third-party software or alternative links to access the poker room..
- Top-notch software solutions. The usability of the general interface of the website to the quality of online poker rooms was taken into account.
- Pleasant promotions, high rakeback with a potential boost from becoming a member of the VIP program of the platform.
PokerKing grants access to a massive field with American amateurs and crypto transactions for Iranian poker players. You can take advantage of a profitable welcome bonus of up to $2,000 and cash games and MTTs are available around the clock. For true grinders the room can give over 60% rakeback via the VIP program.
PPPoker was born as a solution for grinders living in countries with restrictive regulations. The independent club and agent model with crypto transactions allows players from any country to access tons of tables with cash games and MTTs 24/7. Although welcome bonuses are unlikely, our deal provides top rakeback and money guarantees.
I live in Pakistan. Can you make an example please?
Well, online poker in Pakistan is not massive, you guys have very well-known players as Owais Ahmed, who won a WSOP bracelet in 2011. In Pakistan, the government is more focused on legislations about sports betting than online poker, and in the country you can even find legal lottery and horse races. Neteller and Skrill are available in Pakistan which is a great advantage for our poker players living there.
About online poker regulation
You can always add us in Skype to compliment all the information we present in our website, but, here we can do a short resume about online poker regulation in Middle Eastern countries:
- Pakistan Online Poker Regulation: Online or live poker in Pakistan is not very popular, but that does not mean there are no poker players living in Pakistan. Usually, the websites of online poker rooms are not blocked by the internet services, and this is because the authorities are more focused in sports betting. It is not legal to play online poker in Pakistan, so if you decide to do it, you need to be careful enough.
- Iran Online Poker Regulation: We can say Iran is currently a grey market for online poker. Major poker rooms as PokerStars are not available, and it is certainly not totally legal to play online poker, but authorities are not really concerned about it, especially if we are talking about private games.
- Iraq Online Poker Regulation: Iraq seems to be a permissive country regarding online poker games, and actually the internet gambling is legal. Poker is totally legal in Iraq and you can play any poker site that allows Iraq online poker players, but the thing is that not much online poker rooms takes Iraq poker players, and here we can help, showing you a whole new world of online poker rooms.
About processing payment methods
While some Iranian and Middle East players continue using conventional payment methods like credit/debit cards or e-wallets for gambling transactions, according to the CBI, it is illegal. Moreover, the Central Bank of the country continues stepping up the efforts to block them. It is possible for players from Iran to set up a WebMoney account and accrue money to it via any available online exchange. Besides, a number of websites support the Perfect Money e-Voucher that can be bought by anyone using an account in the national bank.
However, there is no need to bother, as cryptocurrencies have become the most convenient payment method for Iranian gamblers. The most common are Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Famous Iranian poker players
Considering the fact that Iran is, to say the least, not friendly towards poker players, it is challenging to keep track of all the grinders and professional gamblers coming from it. However, The Hendon Mob ranking provides information on the top 293 Iranian poker pros. According to the latest updated information, 28 of them have all-time winnings over 100,000 USD, while 5 can boast winnings exceeding 1 million dollars.
Here are 5 best Iranian poker players for 2022:
- Amir Vahedi. The current place on the all-time money list is 517th with 3.3 million USD of total winnings.
- Ali Reza Fatehi. The current place on the all-time money list is 785th with 2.4 million USD of total winnings.
- Ahadpur Khangah. The current place on the all-time money list is 791st with 1.4 million USD of total winnings.
- Milad Oghabian Langar. All-time winnings are 1.2 million USD.
- Kianoosh Mohajeri. All-time winnings are 1.1 million USD.
Even though no poker players from Iran have made it to the TOP500 list yet, such a large number of renowned professionals tells about the living interest of the country's population in the game.
The Middle East is among the countries that have a stricter approach to all gambling activities, even compared to other Muslim-major countries. Online poker is banned on the legislation level, however, authorities currently do not impose any penalties on online poker players. Several internet platforms operating in foreign countries accept Iranians, which technically can play games of chance online from home and in privacy. Due to the blocking of the conventional payment methods for gambling transactions, the most convenient option is cryptocurrency.
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