Australia Facebook removes main page of Myanmar military for 'incitement of violence'

07:50  21 february  2021
07:50  21 february  2021 Source:   abc.net.au

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In response, Facebook removed six pages and six accounts associated with him and other military commanders. “We want to prevent them from using our service to further inflame ethnic and religious tensions,” the company said. The removed pages and accounts had a total of almost 12 million followers. The company had already pledged to hire more Burmese speakers to monitor hate speech on Facebook , but the removal of the military -linked accounts shows an increase in actions against those accused of promoting anti-Rohingya rhetoric. The official page of the military ’s Myawaddy

Facebook Inc said on Tuesday it had removed a page linked to Myanmar 's military -owned TV network after a coup this week by the country's military leaders. U.N. human rights investigators previously said hate speech on Facebook had played a key role in fomenting violence in Myanmar .

Facebook has deleted the main page of the Myanmar military, citing its standards prohibiting the incitement of violence, a day after two protesters were killed when police opened fire at a demonstration against the February 1 coup.

"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," a Facebook representative said in a statement.

The Myanmar military is known as the Tatmadaw.

Its True News page was no longer available on Sunday.

Two people were killed in Myanmar's second city, Mandalay, when police and soldiers fired at protesters demonstrating against the overthrow of the elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi, emergency workers said.

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Facebook (FB.O) said on Monday it was removing several Myanmar military officials from the social media website and an Instagram account to prevent the spread of "hate and misinformation" after reviewing the content. It was the first time Facebook banned a country's military or political leaders, according to Facebook spokeswoman Ruchika Budhraja. Their report said the commander-in-chief of Myanmar 's armed forces and five general should be prosecuted for orchestrating the gravest crimes under the law.

Facebook has banned dozens of Myanmar FB Pages and accounts for inciting violence against Rohingya Muslims. Image: Ahmed Salahuddin/NurPhoto via Getty Images. Facebook has just removed a number of Facebook pages belonging to individuals and groups in Myanmar for spreading hate speech and fake news against Rohingya Muslims in the country. In a post titled “ Removing Myanmar Military Officials From Facebook ” on its Newsroom site, Facebook announced it had removed 52 Pages ,18 accounts, and an Instagram profile related to spreading the type of

It was the bloodiest day in more than two weeks of demonstrations.

Last Sunday, the military began to roll out armoured vehicles in several cities.

Facebook in recent years has engaged with civil rights activists and democratic political parties in Myanmar and pushed back against the military after coming under heavy international criticism for failing to contain online hate campaigns.

In 2018, it banned army chief Min Aung Hlaing — now the military ruler — and 19 other senior officers and organisations, and took down hundreds of pages and accounts run by military members for coordinated inauthentic behaviour.

Ahead of November elections, Facebook announced it had taken down a network of 70 fake accounts and pages operated by members of the military that had posted either positive content about the army or criticism of Ms Suu Kyi and her party.

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Last year, the Myanmar military launched a violent crackdown in Rakhine state after Rohingya militants carried out deadly attacks on police posts. The new report was commissioned after the UN accused Facebook of being "slow and ineffective" in its response to the spread of hatred online. The 62- page independent report from non-profit organisation Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) found that the platform "has become a means for those seeking to spread hate and cause harm" in Myanmar .

See more of Myanmar Military Observers on Facebook . Facebook is showing information to help you better understand the purpose of a Page . See actions taken by the people who manage and post content.

Australia 'saddened' by death of pro-democracy protester

Protesters paid tribute to a young woman who died a day earlier, after being shot by police during a rally in the capital, Naypyitaw.

An impromptu memorial created under an elevated roadway in Yangon attracted about 1,000 protesters.

A wreath of bright yellow flowers was hung beneath a photograph of Mya Thwet Thwet Khine, who was shot on February 9, two days before her 20th birthday.

"We are saddened by reports of the death of a young woman injured by police gunfire during demonstrations in Nay Pyi Taw on 9 February," a spokesperson for Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) told the ABC.

"We continue to urge authorities to refrain from using violence in response to those exercising their assembly rights through nationwide protests."

Singapore, which together with Myanmar is part of the 10-member Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN), condemned the use of lethal force as "inexcusable".

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Since August, Facebook has taken down 425 pages , 17 groups, 135 accounts and 15 Instagram accounts involved in the incitement of violence against ethnic groups in Myanmar . "Today, we are taking more action, designating four more groups in Myanmar as dangerous organizations — the Arakan Army, the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army, Kachin Independence Army and the Ta'ang National Liberation Army," Facebook added in its post. "These armed groups are now banned from Facebook , and all related praise, support and representation will be removed as soon as we

"The ethnic violence in Myanmar has been truly horrific. Earlier this month, we shared an update on the steps we’re taking to prevent the spread of hate and misinformation on Facebook . The FBI is investigating widespread calls for violence across the country and every American has an obligation to lower the temperature.” Last week, before the House impeached President Trump for a second time on an “ incitement of insurrection” charge, Sasse had vowed to consider any articles of impeachment against Trump that came before the Senate.

"We strongly urge the security forces to exercise utmost restraint to avoid further injuries and loss of lives, and take immediate steps to de-escalate the situation and restore calm," the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

"If the situation continues to escalate, there will be serious adverse consequences for Myanmar and the region."

Both Singapore and Indonesia have said ASEAN should play a key role in encouraging dialogue and a return to normalcy in Myanmar.

US State Department spokesman Ned Price offered his government's condolences and reiterated calls on the military to refrain from violence against peaceful protesters.

The US, Britain, Canada and New Zealand have announced limited sanctions, with a focus on military leaders.

DFAT said Australia was "deeply concerned" about the military coup and was "reviewing its engagement with Myanmar, including in relation to defence cooperation and sanctions".

"We continue to call for the immediate release of Australian economist Professor Sean Turnell and others arbitrarily detained since 1 February," the spokesperson said.

Professor Turnell was arrested by authorities days after the coup was launched.

He is the director of the Myanmar Development Institute in the capital, Naypyidaw, and has worked as an economic advisor to Ms Suu Kyi for several years.


At least 18 protesters were killed amid intensifying pro-democracy demonstrations in Myanmar .
The protesters were shot and killed by the military government, according to the UN.For nearly a month, a growing coalition of protesters has demanded the end of military rule in Myanmar, following a coup that led to the arrest of the nation’s civilian leaders on February 1. Demonstrations have taken place continuously across the country, taking the form of student protests, the halting of public transportation, and work stoppages that threaten to derail Myanmar’s economy.

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