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Twitter 'permanently suspends' Donald Trump's account to stop 'further incitement of violence'

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By Emma Beswick
ILE: US President Donald Trump, January 27, 2020
ILE: US President Donald Trump, January 27, 2020   -   Copyright  AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Twitter says it has "permanently suspended" outgoing US President Donald Trump's account in the wake of recent tweets linked to riots in the Capitol.

The tech giant said in a statement that it had taken the measure to "due to the risk of further incitement of violence".

It added that it had come to the decision "after close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account".

Trump was frozen out of the platform for 12 hours on Wednesday after he labelled people who stormed the US Capitol building "patriots".

His accounts on Facebook and Instagram were blocked "indefinitely" after failing to condemn Washington DC violence, said CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

The big tech mogul added the block would remain on the Facebook and Instagram accounts until a peaceful transition of power is complete because the risks are “simply too great”.

Twitter has highlighted two posts by the incumbent president for the permanent move, saying it deemed that they "must be read in the context of broader events in the country and the ways in which the President’s statements can be mobilized by different audiences, including to incite violence, as well as in the context of the pattern of behavior from this account in recent weeks".

  1. On January 8, 2021, President Donald J. Trump tweeted

“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!!!”

  1. Shortly thereafter, the President tweeted:

“To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th.”

Twitter added that after assessing the language, it deemed the tweets were in violation of the platform's Glorification of Violence policy.

Trump's critics have been saying the social media platform should throw him off for years, with former first lady Michelle Obama tweeting on Thursday the president was displaying "monstrous behaviour" and Twitter should permanently ban him.

His opponent in the 2016 elections, Democrat Hillary Clinton, retweeted an old call from June that year for the Republican to delete his account on the platform.