Twitter Continues to Suppress Ethiopian and Eritrean Accounts After Global #NoMore Successful Campaign
- The words, “NoMore”, and “Hands off Ethiopia”, are echoing immensely in every corner of the globe to denounce the interferences of western against Ethiopia’s internal affairs.
- Twitter disabled the accounts of at least a dozen Ethiopians and Eritreans accounts that help promote the #NoMore hashtag campaign decrying US intervention in the two nations’ affairs.
- US-based social media giants like Twitter have a long history of policing accounts on their platforms that are used to counter US foreign policy aims.
- “Twitter’s attempts to silence one of the most robust and active anti-imperialist communities on Twitter will only grow the movement in both the digital and physical world. We will not go away silently,”
On Monday, Twitter disabled the accounts of at least a dozen Ethiopians and Eritreans and their related groups without justification. The accounts had recently helped promote the #NoMore hashtag campaign decrying US intervention in the two nations’ affairs, which led to worldwide protests.
Among the disabled accounts was Horn of Africa Hub, a page started in October 2021 with 18.8 thousand followers that describe itself as “combating false, deadly narratives about the Horn of Africa,” including in Ethiopia, Somalia, Eritrea, Djibouti, “and beyond.” The page had been instrumental in promoting the #NoMore hashtag campaign, which became immensely popular with the Ethiopian and Eritrean communities both inside those countries and around the globe.
As Sputnik reported, several large protests involving tens of thousands of participants, took place in Washington, DC, Addis Ababa, and more than 30 countries around the globe thanks to organizers using the #NoMore hashtag, demanding the US stop sanctioning Ethiopia and Eritrea, stop demonizing Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, and for Western media to stop spreading misinformation about the conflict between the two governments and the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).
Another account taken down was that of Simon Tesfamariam, executive director of the New Africa Institute and one of the administrators of the Horn of Africa Hub page. Speaking to Sputnik on Monday, he said that “today, Twitter suspended every account associated with my phone without any prison warning. This includes accounts that I do not even use. Eleven other accounts associated with fighting imperialism in the Horn of Africa were also taken down without warning.”
Coming on the heels of the massive #NoMore global demonstration against intervention in the Horn, this Twitter crackdown is clearly politically motivated and has little to do with Twitter’s ‘rules and regulations,’” Tesfamariam said in his statement.
“In fact, today’s suspensions are seen as part of the second wave of repression against the #NoMore movement. Earlier this month, Twitter shut down a number of accounts immediately after the start of the #NoMore campaign on November 1. The suspensions will likely continue, especially as #NoMore spreads like wildfire beyond the Horn to other parts of Africa, including Burkina Faso and Niger where Africans are saying “no more” or “pas plus” to French troops.”
“Twitter’s attempts to silence one of the most robust and active anti-imperialist communities on Twitter will only grow the movement in both the digital and physical world. We will not go away silently,” he added. His account, which was 12 years old, had more than 36,800 followers.
Cover for US Foreign Policy
US-based social media giants like Twitter have a long history of policing accounts on their platforms that are used to counter US foreign policy aims. Twitter has taken down thousands of accounts in vast sweeps that sometimes claim to be targeting state-directed disinformation operations – with little evidence that their popularity is anything other than people with a different perspective than Washington’s – as well as many sweeps for which no justification at all is given.
For example, in September 2019, Twitter disabled dozens of Cuban accounts for government ministries, government officeholders, and even Cuban journalists, just minutes before Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel addressed the nation about ways to mitigate the country’s fuel shortage. Other targets have included accounts from Iran, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Bolivia, Russia, and China.
On the other hand, Twitter has looked the other way when the disinformation campaigns push a pro-US narrative, as they did in July, when an astroturfed campaign promoted anti-Cuban government messages just as the US government sought to fan and amplify protests in Cuba, as well as claims that the Cuban government was violently repressing the demonstrations. Similarly, users have claimed that Twitter has strictly moderated the behavior of pro-Abiy users while giving generous leeway to threats and attacks by pro-TPLF accounts.
When it comes to Ethiopia, Twitter’s Monday takedowns fall perfectly in line with US interests. As Sputnik reported last week, US and European diplomats have been meeting secretly with leaders of the TPLF to express their support for the Tigrayan offensive and for a “transition government” following their prospective capture of Addis Ababa and removal of Abiy. However, new gains made by the Ethiopian military over the weekend have cast that outcome in even greater doubt.
One meeting captured on video was hosted by the Peace and Development Center International (PDCI), a think tank reported to have connections with the TPLF. According to investigative journalist Jeff Pearce, one of the founding members of the PDCI was Mimi Alemayehou, a business mogul who rallied support among the Ethiopian-American diaspora for now-US President Joe Biden’s 2020 election campaign and who sits on Twitter’s board of directors.
However, Alemayehou has since sought to downplay the report, distancing herself from the PDCI in a Saturday statement that called Pearce’s article about her involvement in setting up the think tank a “defamatory accusation.” She also said in her role at Twitter she is “not involved in any content moderation decisions.”
The conflict in Ethiopia began in November 2020 when the TPLF, which was the US’ most reliable regional partner during the three decades it was in power, attacked Ethiopian military units stationed in the northern Tigray state. Abiy, whose political reforms since 2018 have weakened the once-dominating power of the TPLF in Ethiopian affairs, has long been hated by them. After he postponed elections due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the TPLF held its own in defiance.
Meanwhile. the world-renowned African-American Artist, Akon has joined the “No More” movement against the unwarranted Western intervention in Africa. Many African brothers and sisters, Pan-Africanists, and friends of Ethiopia and the continent have been joining the #NoMore movement to protest against the neo-colonialism ambitions of the West.
The African-American artist, Akon announced that he has joined the movement in protest of western intervention in Africa. In his latest message on social media, Akon said: “No More” for the unjust western intervention in the Horn of Africa in particular and Africa in general. Akon called on all concerned to “Defend Africa” from neocolonialism.
According to The Ethiopian Herald, the words, “NoMore”, and “Hands off Ethiopia”, are echoing immensely in every corner of the globe, including in South Africa, the USA, Ireland, London, Norway, and Italy, among others to denounce the interferences of western against Ethiopia’s internal affairs.
The peaceful demonstrations are spreading speedily across the world like wildfire and are condemning the interferences of the Biden administration, some entities as well as the false narratives reporting spread against Ethiopia by the western media.
The Diaspora community, (Ethiopians and people of Ethiopian origin), Africans and Ethiopia’s lovers are expressing their objections about the unjustifiable plots and undue pressure of westerns and their media outlets on Ethiopia. By loudly pronouncing Ethiopia’s truths, and exposing the concerted conspiracies by the West, the demonstrators are showing their solidarity and togetherness with Ethiopia and Ethiopians.
They have also urged those entities to stop interfering in Ethiopia’s internal affairs and halt providing support for the terrorist TPLF group. Recently, African and Caribbean diaspora scholars, professionals, and prominent personalities residing in the UK at an event held at the Ethiopian Embassy in London have vowed to stand together with Ethiopia.
In an event organized by TCD Consulting last Saturday, the scholars urged the West and some international media houses to stop meddling in the internal affairs of Ethiopia and spreading white lies against the nation which is an emblem of pride, freedom, and unity for black peoples.
Ambassador Teferi Mlese, Ethiopia’s Plenipotentiary Ambassador to the UK said that Ethiopia is an African nation that had fought untiringly, beaten the Fascist Italian forces, and can maintain its independence The Victory of Adwa Ethiopians gained over the invading forces has played an important role for the regeneration of freedom and Ethiopianism movement Following the victory gained over the colonialist forces and liberty of the majority of African countries from colonial rule, Ethiopia has also played a leading role in the establishment of the regional organization in Addis Ababa, the scholars added.
Not only that, but Ethiopia has also contributed significantly to the success of the struggle against apartheid in South Africa, ranging from providing training to Nelson Mandela and the issuance of Ethiopian passports.
According to Amb. Teferi, currently the tendency of some Westerners to colonize Africa is taking a new dimension. For this saying, the pressure and propensity to meddle in Ethiopia’s domestic affairs is one of the showcases.
Africans should stand by the side of Ethiopia and condemn the interferences of Westerners and some international media houses’ white lies to revitalize the unity of Africans, and the Pan-African movement.
Tsegaye Chama, Africans, and Caribbean Diaspora Scholars Chairperson and owner of TCD Consultant also said that the current situation in Ethiopia has become concerned of Africans. Thus, all black people around the world should stand together to address the unnecessary interferences and pressures of Westerners on African countries, including Ethiopia.
Participants of the forum also said that the misinformation campaign westerns are following on Ethiopia aims to destabilize Ethiopia and kneel down Africans. The only solution for Africans, who know the truth, is to unite and stand up as one in solidarity and togetherness.
Africa’s problem can be resolved by merely Africans. The solutions that have been arousing from the West, have never yielded prosperity rather than putting the continent into the quagmire of poverty.
Ethiopia has its own wisdom and system to resolve its own domestic affairs. Thus, the issue should be left to Ethiopia alone Meanwhile, the participants have decided to establish a Global Black History and Heritage Center in Ethiopia. As to them, the Center would enable to revitalize the historic Pan Africanism Movement.
As the Spokesperson Office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs reported, at the forum, prominent public figures, law and media professionals, black politicians and black rights activists, government bodies, historians, and artists participated.
source The Ethiopian Herald