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Facebook and Instagram to ban Trump until he leaves office, possibly longer

Donald Trump
Posted at 8:23 AM, Jan 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-07 14:06:41-05

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook and Instagram will continue to block President Donald Trump from his accounts until he leaves office on Jan. 20, and possibly even longer.

In a Facebook post, Zuckerberg says his company believes the risks of allowing Trump to continue to use their services to spread misinformation in the final days of his presidency are too great.

“Therefore, we are extending the block we have placed on his Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks until the peaceful transition of power is complete,” wrote Zuckerberg.

Like many others, Zuckerberg believes Trump intends to use his remaining time in office to undermine the peaceful and lawful transition of power to President-elect Joe Biden.

In addition to Facebook and Instagram, Twitter has also blocked Trump from using his account on that platform after he repeatedly posted false accusations about the integrity of the election.

The breaking point seems to have been on Wednesday, when Trump encouraged his supporters to protest Congress’ certification of Biden’s Electoral College win. That led to extremists storming the U.S. Capitol during the counting process, prompting a lockdown.

“His decision to use his platform to condone rather than condemn the actions of his supporters at the Capitol building has rightly disturbed people in the US and around the world,” said Zuckerberg. “We removed these statements yesterday because we judged that their effect – and likely their intent – would be to provoke further violence."

Once Congress confirmed Biden's win early Thursday morning, Trump did release a statement through his communications team, saying there will be a peaceful transition of power. His statement stopped short of conceding the race, though.

Now that Congress has certified Biden’s win, Zuckerberg says the priority for the whole country must now be to ensure that the remaining 13 days and the days after inauguration pass peacefully and in accordance with established democratic norms.