UPDATE: Readers are pointing out that Facebook Messenger is actually not available in many countries outside the US, including the UK. We apologize for any misleading information.

It’s well known that the UK is under threat by its own people right now; but who’d think that it would affect an iPhone app’s arrival in the App Store.

The Facebook Messenger app was released in the US App Store yesterday, and great speculation has been raised as to why it has not yet had its UK App Store release. The answer is simple: to prevent further planning of rioting via instant messaging

The UK riots have said to be organized mostly via BlackBerry Messenger, a mobile instant messenger in direct competition with the new Facebook Messenger for mobile platforms. The main reason being for the use of BlackBerry Messenger is that any messages sent cannot be traced by the police, which is a clever move for any criminal.

Facebook made a great move by holding back on its UK App Store iPhone app release and showing its respect to the UK. The UK government is currently in conversation with RIM (BlackBerry Messenger) and WhatsApp! in regards to closing the services for a short period of time to help prevent the riots.

There has been no official statement from Facebook regarding this as of yet, but the reason is obvious. Don’t you think?

Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected by the UK riots.