Twitter removes accounts linked to Egypt, Saudi Arabia, other countries


On Thursday, Twitter removed thousands of accounts linked to Egypt, Honduras, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, and Serbia because they obtained government instructions or promoted pro-government content.

Twitter and other social media companies are under pressure to clean up misinformation and spiteful content on their platforms, while abuse from the coronavirus outbreak has also increased control of their actions. Twitter said it removed the accounts for violating the policy and a targeted attempt to undermine the public conversation.

It removed 2,541 accounts in the Egypt-based El Fagr network because it created fake accounts to reinforce critical messages about Iran, Qatar and Turkey. “Information we obtained externally indicates that it was taking the direction of the Egyptian government,” said Twitter.

The company removed 3,104 fake accounts created by an employee on behalf of the government from one IP range in Honduras to retweet the president’s account. An investigation that followed a report by research website Bellingcat on an Indonesian information operation targeting the West Papua independence movement resulted in the removal of 795 fake accounts.

Twitter has also removed 5,350 accounts associated with Saudi Arabia and operating from multiple countries, including Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, who were content with the Saudi leadership and critical of Qatar and Turkish operations in Yemen. A total of 8,558 accounts that worked to promote the ruling party of Serbia and its leader were also removed.

(This story has not been edited by staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)


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