Twitter has permanently suspended outgoing US President Donald Trump’s account, citing the risk of “further incitement of violence”.
“After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence,” Twitter announced this evening.
Trump’s account was initially banned for 12 hours due to “severely violating” the social media platform’s civil integrity policy after he tweeted condemnation of Vice President Mike Pence as his supporters stormed the Capitol.
However, he has now been banned entirely, shortly after over 300 Twitter employees signed an internal petition calling for this course of action.
“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,” Twitter said.
“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 and cannot use Twitter to incite violence. We will continue to be transparent around our policies and their enforcement.”
Trump has also been indefinitely suspended from Facebook until at least 20th January, when Joe Biden is set to succeed him as President after triumphing in last November’s election.
Twitter’s decision to ban a sitting US President is unprecedented and is sure to stir up debate about the role social media companies should play moving forwards.