(WWLP/AP) – Twitter has permanently suspended President Donald Trump’s account Friday.
Twitter said after close review of recent Tweets from the president’s account and the context around them, “we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence.”
This comes after a group of his supporters attacked and vandalized the US Capitol on Wednesday, as they voted to certify the 2020 presidential election results.
President Trump’s account was suspended at 88.7 million followers and 51 follows.
Earlier Friday, Twitter banned Michael Flynn, Sidney Powell, and other accounts associated with QAnon.
President Trump has 12 days left in office, with no plans to attend the inauguration of his successor Joe Biden. Trump also plans to leave the White House on January 19, one day ahead of the traditional transition.
The social platform has been under growing pressure to take further action against Trump following Wednesday’s deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. Twitter initially suspended Trump’s account for 12 hours after he posted a video that repeated false claims about election fraud and praised the rioters who stormed the Capitol.
Twitter’s move deprives Trump of a potent tool he has used to communicate directly with the American people for more than a decade. He has used Twitter to announce policy changes, challenge opponents, insult enemies, praise his allies and himself — and to spread misinformation, flirt with inciting violence and denounce targets of his ire in capital letters.
Twitter has long given Trump and other world leaders broad exemptions from its rules against personal attacks, hate speech and other behaviors. But in a detailed explanation posted on its blog Friday, the company said recent Trump tweets amounted to glorification of violence when read in the context of the Capitol riot and plans circulating online for future armed protests around the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.
In those tweets, Trump stated that he will not be attending the inauguration and referred to his supporters as “American Patriots,” saying they will have “a GIANT VOICE long into the future.” Twitter said these statements “are likely to inspire others to replicate the violent acts that took place on January 6, 2021, and that there are multiple indicators that they are being received and understood as encouragement to do so.”
The company said “plans for future armed protests have already begun proliferating on and off-Twitter, including a proposed secondary attack on the US Capitol and state capitol buildings on January 17, 2021. ”
Twitter said its policy enables world leaders to speak to the public, but that these accounts “are not above our rules entirely” and can’t use Twitter to incite violence.