Facebook removed the main page of Myanmar military as protests continue following a military coup

  • Facebook removed the main page for the Myanmar military on Sunday, Reuters reported. 
  • The platform said the page violated standards that prohibit the incitement of violence. 
  • Several people have been killed by police in recent anti-coup protests. 
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Facebook deleted the main page of the Myanmar military on Sunday for violating the platform’s standards that prohibit the incitement of violence, Reuters reported. 

Insider has reached out to Facebook for comment, but a spokesperson told Reuters: “In line with our global policies, we’ve removed the Tatmadaw True News Information Team Page from Facebook for repeated violations of our Community Standards prohibiting incitement of violence and coordinating harm.” 

The military, known as the Tatmadaw, took over on February 1, claiming there was mass voter fraud during the country’s November elections.

An independent election committee, however, reviewed the claims and found them to be baseless. 

The coup resulted in the detention of officials including President Win Myint and civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

On Saturday, riot police shot and killed two people protesting against the coup, the Associated Press reported. 

On February 9, another woman was shot in the head during protests. Mya Thweh Thweh Khine, 20, died on Friday after being on life support. 

In a Facebook post, Kyi Toe, spokesperson for the National League for Democracy said Khine was shot by “a bullet that pierced a motorcycle helmet,” and rights groups confirmed that she was shot by police.

The military’s “True News Information Unit” however, claimed that only non-lethal weapons were used during the protests. 

Earlier this month, in response to the coup, Facebook said it would “significantly reduce the distribution of all content on Facebook Pages and profiles run by the Myanmar military that has continued to spread misinformation. 

The platform has been criticized in the past for not being strict enough on moderating political content. 

In 2018, Mark Zuckerberg said the platform played a role in the ethnic cleansing of the country’s Rohingya Muslim population.

On Saturday, Google also removed a propaganda blog that was in support of the coup. An online activist discovered that the military was using Blogger, which is owned by Google, for propaganda, as well as Gmail accounts being used to manage companies on a sanctions list released by President Joe Biden. 

“We take action against accounts on our platforms in accordance with our product policies and applicable laws,” a Google spokesperson told Insider’s Jeff Elder. “In this case, we have terminated accounts as a result of President Biden’s Executive Order of 11 February 2021 concerning Myanmar.” 

Biden announced an executive order on February 10 which ordered sanctions against Myanmar’s military leaders, limited the military’s access to the country’s $1 billion in government funds held in the US, and froze assets that help Myanmar’s government. 

“The people of Burma are making their voices heard, and the world is watching,” Biden said in a briefing: “We’ll be ready to impose additional measures, and we’ll continue to work with our international partners to urge other nations to join us in these efforts.”

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