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Twitter Shuts Down Emirates Leaks Account Sparking Accusations of UAE Involvement

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Twitter Shuts Down Emirates Leaks Account Sparking Accusations of UAE Involvement

Twitter Shuts Down Emirates Leaks Account Sparking Accusations of UAE Involvement

In a press statement issued yesterday, Emirates Leaks said that Twitter has shut down its account. 

Emirates Leaks said “it is unfortunate and shameful that Twitter continues to collude with the UAE system in violating freedom of opinion and expression and restricting the media in response to Abu Dhabi’s pressure.”

Emirates Leaks has announced the launch of a new account for the site.

The statement claims that the move to suspend the account is linked to pressure from the UAE authorities in a bid to silence the news outlet. Twitter’s regional office for the Middle East is based in Dubai. 

A hashtag #Change_Office_Twitter_Dubai has circulated in response to the perceived role of the UAE over Twitter’s decision to block certain accounts.

In October 2019 Middle East Eye published an article about Twitter and Facebook’s relationship with the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Israel titled “Facebook and Twitter can't uphold standards with offices in repressive Middle East countries.” The piece referenced the fact that Emirati academic Dr Nasser bin Gaith was detained due to his Twitter posts just one day before Twitter opened their regional office in Dubai in 2015.

Social media platforms play a vital role in facilitating the right to freedom of speech as outlined in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).

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