Twitter mistakenly pulled accounts monitoring Russian troops

24 Feb 2022 08:46am
This handout photo from the Russian Defence Ministry on Feb 21, 2022, shows Russian and Belarus tanks during joint exercises of their armed forces near Brest, Belarus - AFP
This handout photo from the Russian Defence Ministry on Feb 21, 2022, shows Russian and Belarus tanks during joint exercises of their armed forces near Brest, Belarus - AFP
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WASHINGTON - Twitter acknowledged Wednesday it suspended in error some accounts relaying information about Russian military movements as the threat builds for an attack on Ukraine.

The social network has begun restoring access to the users, which were taken down due to "our work to proactively address manipulated media," tweeted the platform's head of site integrity Yoel Roth.

A company spokesperson said earlier claims that the accounts were taken offline by a coordinated campaign or mass complaints were untrue.

"We took enforcement action on a number of accounts in error," the spokesperson added.

"We're expeditiously reviewing these actions and have already proactively reinstated access to a number of affected accounts."

Like Facebook and YouTube, the platform is regularly accused of not doing enough to fight misinformation.

But Twitter has fewer human and financial resources than its Silicon Valley neighbours to curb the harmful phenomenon.

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Tens of thousands of Russian troops are massed near Ukraine's borders, with the West saying they could attack at any moment.

Rebel leaders in eastern Ukraine have asked Moscow for military help against Kyiv, the Kremlin said, in a move that opens the door for Russian troops to move in.

Washington and Britain say Russia's force is poised to strike Ukraine and trigger the most serious war in Europe for decades, but Russian President Vladimir Putin says he is open to negotiation -- within limits. - AFP

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