Meta has removed Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s Facebook and Instagram profiles for violating its content regulations, India Today reports.
Meta confirmed the decision on Thursday, stating “We have removed these accounts for repeatedly violating our Dangerous Organisations and Individuals policy.”
According to Meta, Khamenei’s Facebook and Instagram profiles were allegedly part of a network engaging in “inauthentic activity” and “misleading people” about “who they are and what they are doing.”
According to a local Iranian source, Al Bawaba, Meta banned 200 Facebook and 125 Instagram profiles, nine groups, and 29 pages associated with the aforementioned Iranian network.
The decision was based on Meta’s policy, which states that organizations or people that “proclaim a violent mission or are engaged in violence to have a presence on our platforms” are not authorized to use the firm’s social media portals in an “effort to prevent and disrupt real-world harm.”
Despite being prohibited in Iran, Khamenei, who has been in power for 35 years, has over 5.1 million followers on his Persian-language Instagram profile and over 204,000 on his English-language account.
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Though Meta made no mention of the Israel-Hamas conflict, Mohammad Marandi, a scholar and former Iranian government advisor, accused Meta of dishonesty, claiming that Israeli politicians did not suffer comparable constraints for supporting their country’s activities in Gaza.
“Ayatollah Khamenei is the sole international leader who supports and promotes the Palestinian resistance movement. That’s his crime.