Twitter deletes thousands of accounts tied to Iran, seeks to end false info campaigns

Twitter has deleted nearly 4,800 accounts linked to the Iranian government which served to promote state actions without disclosing their political connection. (AP Photo)
Updated 13 June 2019

Twitter deletes thousands of accounts tied to Iran, seeks to end false info campaigns

  • In the latest purge of information, the company said it believes 4,779 accounts were associated or backed by Iran
  • The micro-blogging site also said it had removed and archived four accounts affiliated with the St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency

BENGALURU, India: Twitter Inc. on Thursday said it removed thousands of accounts linked to coordinated, state-backed activities it believes were from the Iranian government and archived them to its public database launched last year.
In the latest purge of information, the company said it believes 4,779 accounts were associated or backed by Iran.
The micro-blogging site also said it had removed and archived four accounts affiliated with the St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency, a Russian “troll farm” that has been indicted by US Special Counsel Robert Mueller for attempts to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.
It also removed and archived 130 accounts tied to the Catalan independence movement in Spain, and 33 accounts engaged in manipulative behavior related to Venezuela.
Twitter first released the archive of data associated with known state-backed information operations last October to provide more transparency of information and to stem manipulation on its platform.
“Thousands of researchers from across the globe have downloaded datasets, which contain more than 30 million Tweets and over 1 terabyte of media, using our archive to conduct their own investigations and to share their insights and independent analysis with the world,” Twitter said in a blog post.


Donald Trump says Erdogan told him he wants northern Syria cease-fire to work

Updated 18 October 2019

Donald Trump says Erdogan told him he wants northern Syria cease-fire to work

  • Trump, in a series of tweets, said he had spoken to Erdogan
  • Call followed Trump letter to Turkish president which drew international criticism

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump said Friday that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had assured him that he wants the “cease-fire” with Kurdish militants in northern Syria to work.
Trump, in a series of tweets, said he had spoken to Erdogan and “he very much wants the cease-fire, or pause, to work.
“Likewise, the Kurds want it, and the ultimate solution, to happen,” the US president said.
“There is good will on both sides & a really good chance for success,” he said. “The US has secured the Oil, & the Daesh Fighters are double secured by Kurds & Turkey.”
Trump also said that “some” European countries, which he did not name, “are now willing, for the first time, to take the (Daesh group) Fighters that came from their nations.”
“This is good news, but should have been done after WE captured them,” he said. “Anyway, big progress being made!!!!“
Trump also tweeted “DEFEAT TERRORISM!” in all capital letters in response to a tweet by Erdogan saying “Mr. President, many more lives will be saved when we defeat terrorism, which is humanity’s arch enemy.”
Earlier Friday, Erdogan warned that Ankara would resume military operations against Kurdish forces in Syria if they did not withdraw from a “safe zone” along the Turkey-Syria border.
Turkey has agreed to suspend its offensive for five days in northern Syria while Kurdish fighters withdraw from the area, after high-stake talks with US Vice President Mike Pence in Ankara.