00:57 GMT16 January 2021
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    San Francisco-based social networking giant Twitter has the right to permanently or temporarily suspend its users over “violations” of the company’s rules. It’s most recent high-profile target turned out to be the president of the United States Donald Trump.

    President Donald Trump was permanently banned by Twitter on Friday, with the company claiming that some of POTUS’ recent tweets have jeopardised the US presidential elections and glorified violence.

    The president’s campaign account – @TeamTrump – and those belonging to two of his loyal supporters – former national security advisor Michael Flynn and lawyer Sidney Powell – have also been blocked.

    Michael Flynn, President Donald Trump's former national security adviser, leaves the federal court with his lawyer Sidney Powell, left, following a status conference with Judge Emmet Sullivan, in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019
    © AP Photo / Manuel Balce Ceneta
    Michael Flynn, President Donald Trump's former national security adviser, leaves the federal court with his lawyer Sidney Powell, left, following a status conference with Judge Emmet Sullivan, in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019

    They join the list of political outcasts who have been targeted by Twitter team in the past. Most of those previously excluded from the platform expressed some clear conservative inclinations.

    Here's a list featuring some of Twitter's most notable banishments. 

    Political Activists, Republican Candidates and Iranian Minister

    • Tommy Robinson: Former English Defence League leader was permanently blocked from the platform in March, 2018 over the “hateful conduct” rule. Robinson, who advised ex-UKIP leader Gerard Batten, said back then that the ban was caused by a tweet in which he argued that “Islam promotes killing people.”
    • Briscoe Cain: Republican member of the Texas House of Representatives was suspended by Twitter for 141 days back in September, 2019 following a tweet perceived by many as a “death threat” against Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke. When returning to the platform, he wasted no time in re-sharing the screenshot of the post.
    • Britain First Leaders: Paul Golding and Jayda Fransen, the head and deputy head of Britain First political party respectively, saw their personal and group’s accounts suspended in 2017, after sharing some clips purportedly portraying Muslims as violent. The videos were re-tweeted by US President Trump.
    • Kanye West: Not only a musician, producer, businessman, and former Trump endorser but also an official 2020 presidential candidate, once lost access to his account after revealing the phone number of Forbes magazine's editor on his Twitter.
      Rapper Kanye West listens to a question from a reporter during a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House with President Donald Trump, Thursday, Oct. 11, 2018, in Washington
      © AP Photo / Evan Vucci
      Rapper Kanye West listens to a question from a reporter during a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House with President Donald Trump, Thursday, Oct. 11, 2018, in Washington
    • Steve Bannon: Former White House Chief Strategist and fierce Trump supporter had his account deleted for good. This came after he suggested that COVID-19 Task Force top expert Dr. Anthony Fauci, as well as FBI Director Christopher Wray, should be beheaded.
    • DeAnna Lorraine: The ex-Republican candidate was banned from Twitter in November after she tweeted that “immigrants would enter the US and commit violence if Trump is not elected."
    • Danielle Stella: The Republican candidate hoping to challenge Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar of Minnesota was banned from the platform after maintaining that Omar should be “tried for #treason and hanged” in case it's proven that she had “passed sensitive info to Iran.”
    • Iranian Minister Bijan Namdar Zangeneh: The Minister of Petroleum's account was blocked in November, just after he was hit with sanctions by the US Treasury for supporting the Quds Force. However, it’s not clear if the ban was related to that.
      Iran's Minister of Petroleum, Bijan Namdar Zangeneh arrives for a meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, at their headquarters in Vienna, Austria, Thursday, March 5, 2020
      © AP Photo / Ronald Zak
      Iran's Minister of Petroleum, Bijan Namdar Zangeneh arrives for a meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, at their headquarters in Vienna, Austria, Thursday, March 5, 2020

    Conservative Voices Banned

    • Alex Jones and InfoWars: Conservative journalist Alex Jones is one of the most outspoken Twitter targets. His personal accounts, as well as those linked to his InfoWars website, were blocked forever by the social media giant over “abusive behaviour” after “numerous violations and warnings.”
      Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones walks at the Conservative Political Action Conference, CPAC 2020, at the National Harbor, in Oxon Hill, Md., Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020
      © AP Photo / Jose Luis Magana
      Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones walks at the Conservative Political Action Conference, CPAC 2020, at the National Harbor, in Oxon Hill, Md., Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020
    • Candace Owens: The author of Blackout: How Black America Can Make Its Second Escape from the Democrat Plantation saw her account suspended in May over her take on the coronavirus pandemic, after she apparently suggested that the Michigan governor’s stay-at-home order should be defied. 
    • Katie Hopkins: Media commentator and columnist permanently lost access to her Twitter account in June for what has been described by Twitter as “violations of the hateful conduct policy.” The company did not specify which tweets exactly breached its rules but some suggested that Hopkins’ vocal opposition to free school meals landed her in hot water.  
    • James Woods: The account of the American actor was locked on a number of occasions for some controversial and election-related stunts. President Trump and Wood mutually endorsed each other, with POTUS once slamming Twitter for targeting the “strong but responsible Conservative Voice” of Woods.  The actor publicly argued in 2018 that "the blacklist against conservatives in Hollywood is very real.”
      In this Nov. 2, 2016, file photo, actor James Woods poses at the premiere of the film Bleed for This at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills, Calif. Woods has been locked out of his Twitter account over a tweet he sent out on July 20, 2018, that was found to be in violation of Twitter’s rules
      © AP Photo / Chris Pizzello
      In this Nov. 2, 2016, file photo, actor James Woods poses at the premiere of the film "Bleed for This" at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills, Calif. Woods has been locked out of his Twitter account over a tweet he sent out on July 20, 2018, that was found to be in violation of Twitter’s rules
    • Donald Trump Jr.: The eldest son of the US president also lost an access to his Twitter page for 12 hours in July 2020 after he shared a clip in which he discussed the benefits of the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine – the one his father is known to have taken – in preventing COVID-19. Twitter announced that Don Jr. violated the platform’s “misinformation” rules with the post. But unlike his father, he was able to return to the popular social networking site.

    Those who are banished from the platform for good are not usually told which tweets are responsible. 

    U.S. President Donald Trump departs on travel to West Point, New York from the South Lawn at the White House in Washington, U.S., December 12, 2020.
    © REUTERS / CHERISS MAY
    U.S. President Donald Trump departs on travel to West Point, New York from the South Lawn at the White House in Washington, U.S., December 12, 2020.

    When President Trump’s account was first temporarily suspended on Wednesday following the storming of the Capitol Building in Washington, DC by rioters – as he has continued disputing the results of the 3 November presidential vote – Twitter said he had been temporarily banned for "repeated and severe violations” of its Civic Integrity policy.

    But after he tweeted that he will not be attending Joe Biden’s inauguration and cheered 75 million of his supporters for having “a GIANT VOICE long into the future,” the platform blocked him forever, publicly declaring that his claims can again be seen as undermining the legitimacy of the 3 November vote.

    Tags:
    suspension, bans, US Congress, Donald Trump, Iran, Great Britain, United States
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