With supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump moving into Capitol grounds, tech companies, including Snap Inc, Twitter Inc and Facebook Inc locked their respective accounts of the U.S. President following allegations of China-backed rigging of the 2020 U.S. Presidential elections.
Twitter hid and mandated the removal of three of Trump’s tweets “as a result of the unprecedented and ongoing violent situation in Washington, D.C.,” after pro-Trump protesters stormed the U.S. Capitol.
So far, four people have died on Capitol grounds in the ensuing chaos, including a woman who was shot and killed inside the building.
The chaos however is insignificant compared to the unprecedented mob-led violence during the 2020 U.S. elections. There have been many videos shared on social media alleging systemic widespread rigging of the elections, which Trump and his supporters have amplified.
In a tweet on Wednesday, which was later taken down by Twitter, Trump had tweeted that the storming of the building was a natural response. Trump has also blamed Vice President Mike Pence for lacking “courage” to pursue claims of election fraud.
Twitter has locked Trump’s account which will be unlocked after 12 hours after he deletes his tweets wherein he had shared a video alleging that the presidential election was fraudulent while urging protesters to go home. Alphabet-owned Facebook and YouTube, have also removed the video.
In a statement Facebook said it would block Trump’s page from posting for 24 hours, with vice president of integrity Guy Rosen tweeting the video “contributes to rather than diminishes the risk of ongoing violence.” In a blog post, Facebook also said it would ban calls to bring weapons to locations across the country and would remove any support for the events at the Capitol.
Alex Stamos, Facebook’s former security chief tweeted, “Twitter and Facebook have to cut him off.”
In an internal post, Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote he was “personally saddened by this mob violence.” He went on to add, Facebook was treating the situation as an emergency and “implementing additional measures to keep people safe,” without elaborating.