Twitter’s standards were called into question on Sunday after users pointed out that a key Taliban spokesman has been using the platform to give updates about the group’s advance within the country while former President Trump’s account remains permanently suspended.
Zabihullah Mujahid’s account is not verified but has nearly 280,000 followers and is regularly cited by major news outlets. He recently tweeted an update on “military units” entering Kabul. He wrote that their “advance is continuing normally.”
Jerome Riviere, the French politician, took to Twitter and posted: “Freedom and democracy are not doing well when #Twitter continues to ban #Trump’s account but relays the #Taliban spokesperson’s without any second thoughts.”
Twitter did not immediately respond to an after-hours email from Fox News seeking comment.
On Jan. 8, Twitter announced on its blog that Trump’s account, which had over 80 million followers, was permanently suspended. The reasoning was that keeping the @realDonaldTrump account active would increase the risk of “further incitement of violence.”
The decision came after the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. Twitter pointed to a twee from the former president on Jan. 8 that read: “The 75,000,000 great American Patriots who voted for me, AMERICA FIRST, and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, will have a GIANT VOICE long into the future. They will not be disrespected or treated unfairly in any way, shape or form!”
The Taliban swept into Afghanistan’s capital Sunday after the government collapsed and the embattled president joined an exodus of his fellow citizens and foreigners, signaling the end of a costly two-decade U.S. campaign to remake the country.
The Taliban is known for carrying out attacks that have killed thousands of civilians in the country. The Taliban, from 1996 to 2001, barred women from receiving educations or leaving a house without a male relative, Reuters reported.
The Taliban insisted that their fighters would not enter people’s homes or interfere with businesses and said they would offer “amnesty” to those who worked with the Afghan government or foreign forces.
But there have been reports of revenge killings and other brutal tactics in areas of the country the Taliban have seized in recent days.
The Biden administration has been under criticism for appearing to miscalculate the speed in which Taliban fighters were able to take over the country. Biden’s critics also blame the White House for remaining relatively quiet while the country fell.
One member of Congress said on foreign affairs committee call: “We’ve heard more from the Taliban than we’ve heard from Biden.”
Trump, for his part, issued a statement on Sunday calling for Biden to “resign in disgrace.”
“It is time for Joe Biden to resign in disgrace for what he has allowed to happen to Afghanistan, along with the tremendous surge in COVID, the Border catastrophe, the destruction of energy independence, and our crippled economy,” the former president wrote in a statement.
The Associated Press contributed to this report