Twitter on Saturday permanently banned an account linked to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei after it shared an animated video this week showing a robot and drone attempting to strike against former President Donald Trump. was shown.
Khamenei and Iranian leaders have repeatedly vowed to exact revenge against Trump after he ordered a January 2020 airstrike to kill Iranian Lieutenant General Qasem Soleimani. Khamenei account @KhameneiSite shared the animated video last week, classifying it as the best entry in a contest to celebrate the two-year anniversary of the assassination of the military leader at the behest of the former US president.
“The account referred to has been permanently suspended for violating our ban piracy policy,” a Twitter spokesperson confirmed. newsweek on Saturday. Twitter first confirmed the decision to the BBC and then Fox Business, saying it had permanently blocked the @KhameneiSite account for sharing the clip.
BBC journalist Qian Sharifi wrote, “Twitter says @Khamenei_Site was banned for creating fake account in 2021. However, tweets from that account were frequently retweeted by Khamenei’s main accounts. Iranian Supreme None of the leader’s accounts have been verified by Twitter.” in a Twitter thread on Saturday.
Sharifi said that “Twitter initially removed the animation tweet before permanently suspending the account.” According to Twitter, keeping people safe and protecting the health of conversations on the social media platform is the company’s top priority.
The clip tweeted from the Khamenei account begins with an aerial view of Trump’s Florida golf club. It then moves closer to featuring animated characters who appear to be watching the former president and his aides play a round of golf. The screen alternates to a scene of a man typing military camouflage on a computer, apparently preparing a drone to attack Trump.
One of Trump’s aides receives a text message typed in by a man wearing a military uniform. The message read: “The killing of Soleimani and the one who ordered it will pay the final price.” A nearby robot then shoots what appears to be a targeting laser, as the scene appears to be the targeting screen of an aerial drone. It zooms in on the animated trump as the word “Ready” flashes red.
In January 2021, another account linked to Khamenei shared a similar image, showing a drone ready to attack Trump.
“Revenge is inevitable,” said the post by an account linked to the Iranian leader. “Revenge must be taken against those who ordered the assassination of General Soleimani as well as those who carried it out.”
Although that Twitter post has since been taken down, Khamenei has other accounts active on the site. According to the social media platform, these other accounts are not affected at this time by the decision to ban one account.
“In the enemy’s view, the martyrdom of General Soleimani was considered a threat to us. However, the Muslim Iranian nation turned this threat into an opportunity. The resistance movement was not only quelled, it has grown as much as you can. Let’s see,” the Iranian leader tweeted on January 9 from his @khamenei_ir account.
Trump’s decision to assassinate Soleimani has drawn significant international criticism, as well as by US lawmakers.
with him [Soleimani’s] Death, do you think it is more or less likely that Iran and their militias and their representatives will attack America? I would argue that it’s very likely,” Kentucky Republican Senator Rand Paul said in January 2020, shortly after the assassination.
“The president said he didn’t want to have a permanent war in the Middle East, but he’s adding more and more troops. If you don’t want a permanent war, you don’t send any more targets there,” Paul said.
Notably, Trump himself was permanently banned by Twitter following the January 6, 2021 attack against the US Capitol. Hundreds of supporters of the then president came under attack when they urged him to march to the legislative building and “fight like hell”. That riot occurred in an apparent attempt to obstruct President Joe Biden’s formal certification of the Electoral College victory.
“After a close review of the @realDonaldTrump account’s recent tweets and the context surrounding them—particularly how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter—we have permanently removed the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence. has been suspended,” Twitter wrote in a blog post explaining that decision.