“After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them—specifically how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter—we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence,” Twitter said in a statement.
“In the context of horrific events this week, we made it clear on Wednesday that additional violations of the Twitter Rules would potentially result in this very course of action. Our public interest framework exists to enable the public to hear from elected officials and world leaders directly. It is built on a principle that the people have a right to hold power to account in the open.
“However, we made it clear going back years that these accounts are not above our rules entirely and cannot use Twitter to incite violence, among other things. We will continue to be transparent around our policies and their enforcement.”
Twitter cited two of the president’s most recent posts as justification for its action.
The first post read, “The 75,000,000 great American Patriots who voted for me, AMERICA FIRST, and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, will have a GIANT VOICE long into the future. They will not be disrespected or treated unfairly in any way, shape or form!!!”
Subsequently, the president posted, “To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th.” This is the last Twitter post before Trump’s account was removed from the platform.
Twitter said that the two posts had violated its “Glorification of Violence policy.” The policy aims to “prevent the glorification of violence that could inspire others to replicate violent acts,” according to the social media giant.
Its assessment determined that Trump’s last two Twitter posts “highly likely to encourage and inspire people to replicate the criminal acts that took place at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.” Twitter said its determination is “based on a number of factors,” including five points listed in its statement.
The first point said that Trump’s statement about not attending the Inauguration “is being received by a number of his supporters as further confirmation that the election was not legitimate and is seen as him disavowing his previous claim made via two Tweets (1, 2) by his Deputy Chief of Staff, Dan Scavino, that there would be an ‘orderly transition’ on January 20th.”
Twitter added, in its second point, that Trump’s statement “may also serve as encouragement to those potentially considering violent acts that the Inauguration would be a ‘safe’ target, as he will not be attending.”
The big tech giant said in its third point that Trump’s use of the words “American Patriots” to describe his supporters “is also being interpreted as support for those committing violent acts at the US Capitol.”
Shifting focus to Trump’s second-last post before his account was suspended, Twitter said in its fourth point that Trump’s saying that his supporters have a “GIANT VOICE long into the future” and that “They will not be disrespected or treated unfairly in any way, shape or form!!!” is being interpreted as “further indication that President Trump does not plan to facilitate an ‘orderly transition.'”
Lastly, Twitter said, “Plans for future armed protests have already begun proliferating on and off-Twitter, including a proposed secondary attack on the US Capitol and state capitol buildings on January 17, 2021.”
The Epoch Times cannot independently verify the claims made by Twitter in its determination. The Epoch Times has reached out to Twitter asking whether it had any evidence that Trump’s statements were directly linked to any violence. Twitter did not immediately respond.
The social media giant also removed the Team Trump account used by the Trump campaign.
The Epoch Times has reached out to the White House to enquire whether the president is considering using Parler or another alternative social media. The Epoch Times has also reached out for comment from the Trump campaign.
Earlier in the day, Twitter suspended the accounts of former national security adviser Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn and lawyer Sidney Powell, citing “Coordinated Harmful Activity.” Powell told The Epoch Times that there “was no warning at all” about her account being deleted.
The account deletions suggest that big tech firms, including Twitter, are moving suspend or penalize the accounts of people on their platforms who post claims of voter fraud and irregularities about the Nov. 3, 2020 election.
There have also been multiple claims by various Twitter accounts of having lost followers, sometimes in the thousands, within the past 24 hours.
Brandon Straka, the head of the conservative WalkAway movement, told The Epoch Times Friday that Facebook removed the group’s page and banned individual accounts belonging to the team.
Trump’s Facebook account is still active as of 8 p.m. ET on Friday.
White House, Trump Condemn Violence at Capitol
On Jan. 6, lawmakers gathered at the U.S. Capitol building for a joint session to count and certify the electoral votes for the now-President-elect Joe Biden. A group of protesters breached the building in the afternoon and interrupted lawmakers who were at the time debating whether to reject a slate of Electoral College votes from Arizona. It is unclear who instigated the breach of the building.
Separately, the pandemonium that broke out throughout that day on Capitol grounds left at least five people dead. Three among them died due to medical reasons. One woman died after being shot inside the Capitol building and a U.S. Capitol police officer was confirmed dead by the department on Jan. 7 due to injuries sustained while on duty responding to riots.
The White House and separately Trump himself on Jan. 7 condemned the violence that took place.
“We condemn it, the president and this administration, in the strongest possible terms,” White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany told a press conference. “It is unacceptable and those that broke the law should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
McEnany described Wednesday’s events as “a group of violent rioters undermining the legitimate first amendment rights of the many thousands who came to peacefully have their voices heard in our nation’s capital.”
“Those who violently besieged our capitol are the opposite of everything that this administration stands for,” she said. “The core value of our administration is the idea that all citizens have the right to live in safety peace and freedom.”
She said that people working in the White House “are working to ensure an orderly transition of power.”
Trump separately also condemned the violence, saying, “Like all Americans, I am outraged by the violence, lawlessness, and mayhem. I immediately deployed the National Guard and federal law enforcement to secure the building and expel the intruders.
“America is and must always be a nation of law and order. The demonstrators who infiltrated the Capitol have defiled the seat of American democracy.”
“To those who engaged in acts of violence and destruction, you do not represent our country. And to those who broke the law, you will pay.”