Monday, May 20, 2024

AMLO criticizes social media for blocking Trump’s accounts: ‘I don’t accept that’

President López Obrador on Thursday criticized social media platforms for blocking the accounts of United States President Donald Trump after a violent mob of his supporters broke into the Capitol Building in Washington D.C.

Speaking at his regular news conference, López Obrador said he doesn’t like censorship and that nobody should be deprived of their right to convey a message on Twitter or Facebook.

“I don’t accept that. We all have to show self constraint and guarantee freedom. … How can they censor someone? Let’s see, I punish you because I as a judge, as the holy inquisition, deem that what you’re saying is harmful,” he said.

“… Imagine that Twitter, as a company, decides ‘you no, because what you’re saying is damaging or harmful’ – it goes against good manners. … If there’s censorship on social media, what’s left?”

Twitter and Facebook blocked Trump’s access to his accounts on Wednesday after he used the platforms to publish what The New York Times described as “a string of inaccurate and inflammatory messages” as a violent mob overtook the United States Capitol.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced Thursday morning that a block on Trump’s accounts on that platform and Instagram, which it owns, would be extended at least until the end of the U.S. president’s term.

“We believe the risks of allowing the president to continue to use our service during this period are simply 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,” Zuckerberg wrote on his own Facebook account.

The Twitter suspension was due to expire this morning but Trump remained silent on Thursday.

López Obrador, who has maintained an unlikely friendship with the U.S. president since assuming Mexico’s top job in late 2018, told reporters that he too has suffered censorship but didn’t elaborate.

AMLO, as the president is best known, is an avid user of social media, and has more than 15 million fans, followers and subscribers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

As for the turmoil the United States faced on Wednesday, López Obrador said that Mexico wouldn’t intervene in issues that U.S. authorities have to resolve because the Mexican constitution enshrines the principle of non-intervention in the affairs of foreign countries.

However, he expressed regret about the events that took place in Washington and the loss of human life. (A female Trump supporter was shot dead by Capitol police.)

His failure to condemn the events in Washington was criticized by some.

“Mexico’s president, who has described himself as a humanist/pacifist, declines to comment on the violent assault on the Capitol by Trump supporters, saying he doesn’t opine on other countries’ affairs. Yet just on Monday, AMLO said he favors the U.S. pardoning Julian Assange,” said Eric Martin, a Bloomberg business reporter and former Mexico correspondent, on Twitter.

“AMLO yesterday: proposes giving political asylum in Mexico to [Wikileaks founder] Julian Assange. AMLO today: prefers not to give his opinion about what happened in the Capitol in order to not interfere in the affairs of other countries,” tweeted Carlos Bravo Regidor, a political analyst.

Source: El Universal (sp) 

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