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Vuvuzela fatwa: United Arab Emirates bans the loud plastic horns

Vuvuzela fatwa: The United Arab Emirates has issued a religious edict against vuvuzelas, saying that they can damage fans' hearing.

By Associated Press / July 9, 2010

Vuvuzela fatwa? A soccer supporter blows a vuvuzela before the World Cup round of 16 soccer match between the Netherlands and Slovakia at the stadium in Durban, South Africa, June 28, 2010. The United Arab Emirates has issued a religious edict against the plastic horns, saying that they can damage hearing.

Schalk van Zuydam/AP/File

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Dubai, United Arab Emirated

The horns that have blared at World Cup matches in South Africa make an unholy racket — according to a religious edict in the United Arab Emirates.

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A fatwa by the UAE's General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments declares that the now-famous blast from the plastic vuvuzela is not permitted in the Gulf country if it exceeds 100 decibels — about the sound of a passing train.

It says the typical vuvuzela blast is up to 127 decibels.

The National newspaper in Abu Dhabi reported on Friday that the ruling came after thousands of vuvuzelas were imported to the UAE for World Cup fans. The horns could later appear at local soccer matches.

The fatwa is based on the judgment that the din can damage fans' hearing.

IN PICTURES: Vuvuzela overload