Twitter freezes Trump’s account as social media platforms silence his remarks amid coup attempt
Update: At 7:02 p.m. ET, Twitter announced via its Twitter Safety account that it had temporarily suspended President Trump’s Twitter access.
“As a result of the unprecedented and ongoing violent situation in Washington, D.C.,” the company tweeted, “we have required the removal of three @realDonaldTrump Tweets that were posted earlier today for repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy.”
“This means that the account of @realDonaldTrump will be locked for 12 hours following the removal of these Tweets. If the Tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked,” a subsequent tweet read.
“Future violations of the Twitter Rules, including our Civic Integrity or Violent Threats policies, will result in permanent suspension of the @realDonaldTrump account,” read a third.
The original story follows below.
Facebook has removed a short video by President Donald Trump in which he urged supporters who stormed the U.S. Capitol Wednesday to “go home” while also repeating false accusations about the integrity of the presidential election.
YouTube also said it has removed the Trump video for spreading false claims about widespread election fraud. But a copy of the video was still easy to find as of Wednesday afternoon.
Guy Rosen, Facebook’s vice president of integrity, said on Twitter Wednesday that the video was removed because it “contributes to rather than diminishes the risk of ongoing violence.” Twitter, meanwhile, has left the video up but blocked people from being able to retweet it or comment on it, although it’s still possible to “quote tweet” it.
“This is an emergency situation and we are taking appropriate emergency measures, including removing President Trump’s video,” Rosen said on Twitter.
After Facebook and Twitter removed the video from their platforms, Trump’s tweet containing the video disappeared from Twitter and was replaced with a notice, “This tweet is no longer available.”
The video was issued more than two hours after protesters began storming the Capitol on Wednesday as lawmakers convened for an extraordinary joint session to confirm the Electoral College results and President-elect Joe Biden’s victory.
Trump opened his video saying, “I know your pain. I know your hurt. But you have to go home now.”
He also went on to call the supporters “very special.” He also said: “We can’t play into the hands of these people. We have to have peace. So go home. We love you. You’re very special.”
Republican lawmakers and previous administration officials had begged Trump to give a statement to his supporters to quell the violence. The statement came as authorities struggled to take control of a chaotic situation at the Capitol that led to the evacuation of lawmakers.
Editor’s note: The Associated Press originally published this story with the headline, “Amid Capitol violence, Facebook, YouTube remove Trump video.” Fortune updated the story (addition of fifth paragraph) to reflect the fact that the tweet containing Trump’s video had been removed from Twitter.