Angela Merkel slams Twitter for banning Donald Trump

Angela Merkel slams Twitter for banning Donald Trump

GERMAN CHANCELLOR Angela Merkel has criticised Twitter after they controversially suspended US President Donald Trump's account.

She called the decision to ban him "problematic" and a breach of the "fundamental right to free speech."

Merkel said through her spokesperson that the American government should follow Germany's lead in adopting laws that restrict online incitement, rather than leaving it up to platforms such as Twitter and Facebook to make their own rules.

"Free speech is a fundamental right of vital importance [and should only be restricted] in accordance with the laws and within a framework defined by the legislator - not by the decision of the management of social media platforms," the spokesperson said.

Last week, the president's account was suspended in the aftermath of the riots at the Capitol Building where a number of Trump supporters stormed Congress in an attempt to stop them certifying Joe Biden's election victory.

The social media giant cited "repeated and severe" violations of its civic integrity policies as justification for the ban.

Trump's Facebook and Instagram accounts were also suspended in the aftermath of the riots, as it was deemed that some of his posts were inciting violence.

While many celebrated Trump's ban as a victory against those who would seek to jeopardise the integrity of American democracy, many felt as though Twitter's decision was a serious violation of free speech.

The idea that an unelected private company can decide what the president of the United States is and isn't allowed to say is a deeply unsettling one for many, including Mrs Merkel, and France's minister for finance, Bruno Le Maire.

Mr Le Maire told French outlet France Inter that he was "shocked" by Twitter's decision.

"Digital regulation should not be done by the digital oligarchy itself ... regulation of the digital arena is a matter for the sovereign people, governments and judiciary," he said on Monday.

No matter your opinion on Trump, is silencing him really the answer?