Twitter closes Iranian embassy’s account

May 26, 2020 - 18:53

TEHRAN — Social media giant Twitter has closed the account of Iran’s embassy in Russia without providing any reason, the media department of the embassy announced on Monday night.

Twitter has not yet responded to Iran’s request to provide a reason for the act, IRNA reported on Tuesday.

Twitter has already blocked accounts of several Iranian news agencies without providing any reason.

The Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) announced recently that the account of Jam-e-Jam newspaper was deactivated by the social media network.

More than a year ago, French news agency had quoted Twitter as claiming that such closure is due to dispatch of messages from Iranian accounts against the U.S. policies.

Two years ago, Twitter and Facebook closed hundreds of accounts linked to Iran.

Iran believes that such moves are in violation of freedom of expression, a principle which the West pretends to advocate.

Last month, the U.S. Treasury Department blocked and seized the .com domain of the Iran newspaper and other Iranian media outlets in its latest wave of anti-Iran measures.

The newspaper’s .com domain was seized by the Treasury Department’s Florida-based “OFAC Holding”.

According to Deutsche Welle, the .com domains of some other Iranian websites including the Iran Daily, Al Vefagh, Iran Varzeshi, and Iran Sepid have also been blocked and seized by the OFAC Holding.

In response, Iran’s Foreign Ministry strongly denounced the U.S. Treasury’s hostile measure, describing it as a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and freedom of expression.

“The [U.S.] regime’s act of silencing the alternative media movement has reduced America to the main violator of the law-based international order,” it added.

Back in January, the .com domain of Fars news agency went offline worldwide due to U.S. sanctions.

In a post on its Twitter account at the time, Fars said access to its .com domain had been blocked upon the U.S. Treasury’s order.

Internet users trying to access also found only a blank screen, along with a message stating “’s server IP address could not be found.”

The news agency said it had received an email from its server company, which “explicitly said that the blockage is due to an order by the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) and its inclusion in the list of Specially Designated Nationals (SDN).”

However, Fars can still be accessed through its .ir domain.

U.S.-based giant tech companies such as Google, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram also have a history of targeting Iranian accounts, including those belonging to major broadcasters.

Since Donald Trump became the president of the United States in January 2017, Washington has ramped up anti-Iran measures. Trump adopted a “maximum pressure” policy against Iran later on, after withdrawing from the historic 2015 Iran nuclear deal in May 2018.

The U.S. government has since targeted Iranian officials and organizations with vicious sanctions.


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