By Abba Gwale
President Donald Trump has been suspended from Facebook and Instagram indefinitely, and at least until after the inaguration of the President-elect Joe Biden.
Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg said, as a consequence of his support for the rioters who stormed the US Capitol on Wednesday the company has suspended his account indefinitely.
The US president was initially suspended from the social network for 24 hours, as a result of two posts shared to the platform in which he appeared to praise the actions of the rioters rather than condemning them.
In a post to Facebook on Thursday, Zuckerberg said the suspension would last much longer.
“The shocking events of the last 24 hours clearly demonstrate that President Donald Trump intends to use his remaining time in office to undermine the peaceful and lawful transition of power to his elected successor, Joe Biden,” said Zuckerberg.
He further said, “His decision to use his platform to condone rather than condemn the actions of his supporters at the Capitol building has rightly disturbed people in the US and around the world.”
“We removed these statements yesterday because we judged that their effect — and likely their intent — would be to provoke further violence,” posted the Facebook CEO on his verified page.
“Over the last several years, we have allowed President Trump to use our platform consistent with our own rules, at times removing content or labeling his posts when they violate our policies. We did this because we believe that the public has a right to the broadest possible access to political speech, even controversial speech. But the current context is now fundamentally different, involving use of our platform to incite violent insurrection against a democratically elected government,” Zuckerberg added.
“We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great. Therefore, we are extending the block we have placed on his Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks until the peaceful transition of power is complete,” he concluded.
There was also some unexpected opposition to the ban, Edward Snowden, the NSA whistleblower, tweeted that Facebook had “officially silenced the President of the United States.
Later on Thursday, YouTube announced it would temporarily suspend any accounts that post lies and misinformation regarding the elections or the storming of the Capitol.