Following Twitter banning U.S. President Donald Trump from its platform, an Iranian dissident journalist has called on the social-media company to do the same to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
In a statement to The Jerusalem Post, Masih Alinejad, a women’s rights activist and founder of the My Stealthy Freedom/White Wednesday campaign, said that “a close review of these accounts in multiple languages, which include Persian, English, Spanish and Arabic, shows that Khamenei has repeatedly violated Twitter rules. Even today, @Khamenei_ir account announced a ban on COVID-19 vaccines from the US and the European companies and blamed the French for giving Iran blood tainted with HIV virus.”
In a Twitter thread on Friday, Alinejad posted, “Now it’s time for @Twitter to remove the man who has banned 83 million Iranians from Twitter, bans US & European coronavirus vaccines and ordered the crackdown that killed 1,500 protesters. Remove @Khamenei_fa now.”
She also posted, “You’ve suspended the account of @realDonaldTrump, but you’ve not suspended the account of @khamenei_ir, who used the @Twitter platform to issue death threats. He’s imprisoned various twitter activists while banning Iranians from freely accessing Twitter. Why?”
Twitter announced on Jan. 8 that it has permanently suspended Trump from its platform following the mob invasion of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 as Congress was tallying U.S. President-elect Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory (it eventually did so after the violence was quelled).
Critics blamed Trump’s rhetoric for inciting the riot, which led to five deaths, including that of U.S. Capitol police officer Brian Sicknick.