German Chancellor Angela Merkel recently criticized Twitter and their decision to block President Donald Trump’s Twitter account. Her top spokesman called the move ‘problematic’ and noted that the right of freedom of opinion is of fundamental importance.
As reported by Reuters, Steffen Seibert, the spokesman, said that Merkel considers it problematic that the president’s accounts have been permanently suspended.
Twitter permanently suspended Donald Trump’s Twitter account, even though the President used it as a primary communication tool throughout his presidency. He had gained 70 million followers, and he was tweeting dozens of times a day.
The company has since said that they had banned his account because he risked inciting further violence after a group of his supporters stormed the US Capitol on January 6.
Trump was also banned by Facebook and Instagram, but Twitter’s decision was more important because it was his main communication tool with the public.
Angela Merkel’s remarks show the growing concern among European leaders about Twitter’s decision to suspend Trump’s account permanently. The decision was also questioned by the French and UK governments.
Notably, France’s junior minister for European Union Affairs, Clement Beaune, advocated for a new regulation for private tech companies. He said that this should be decided by the citizens, and not by the CEO of the company.
Additionally, UK minister Matt Hancock also added that the decision by social-media companies to ban Trump raised a big question in terms of regulation because it meant that they’re making editorial decisions.
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny called the move ‘an unacceptable act of censorship’ and said that the precedent will be exploited by the enemies of freedom of speech around the world – including in Russia.
Source: Business Insider