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Facebook Yanks Iran’s Press TV Off Platform “Without Explanation”

Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg

American social networking service Facebook on Tuesday yanked off Iranian-owned news network, Press TV from its app, the state-run firm has said.

The Iranian state media tweeted Tuesday afternoon that Facebook deleted its main page, which had amassed nearly 4 million followers “without any warning or explanation.”

Facebook deletes Press TV's main page without any warning or explanation #BreakingNews #PressTV#facebook pic.twitter.com/j4aDg2BlOp

— Press TV (@PressTV) January 12, 2021

The networking service did not explain reasons for its arbitrary action.

In a follow-up report on its website, Press TV however, disclosed that the decision to take down its page was later rescinded by Facebook following an appeal filed by the network.

The international English news channel alleged that it was branded “ineligible” to use the social media platform by Facebook handlers, whom it said had described the deletion of its page as “final.”

Facebook had in mid-2020 reportedly threatened to block Press TV and two other state-run networks in Russia and China from running adverts in the United States for massively reporting protests against racially motivated police violence in the self-styled world’s most powerful country.

The U.S.-based multinational internet corporation has come under widespread criticism for the increasing censorship of its users.

Last week, the networking service indefinitely suspended the account of U.S. President Donald Trump for inciting violence at the Capitol. This followed a similar move by sister platform Twitter.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel had joined in the criticism of Facebook and Twitter, describing the Trump ban as “problematic.”

Ms. Merkel said in a statement Monday that only legislators had the exclusive preserve to enact policies governing free speech, not private technology firms.

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