Facebook will ban former President Donald Trump from accessing the social network for at least two years, codifying the company’s decision to suspend Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts following the Jan. 6 Capitol siege, the social network announced Friday. The initially open-ended suspension now has a definitive timeline, something that Facebook’s Oversight Board had requested. The ruling means Trump won’t be able to post messages to his followers during the 2022 election.
“Given the gravity of the circumstances that led to Mr. Trump’s suspension, we believe his actions constituted a severe violation of our rules which merit the highest penalty available under the new enforcement protocols,” read the statement by Nick Clegg, Facebook’s VP of global affairs. “We are suspending his accounts for two years, effective from the date of the initial suspension on January 7 this year.” Clegg wrote that when the suspension “is eventually lifted, there will be a strict set of rapidly escalating sanctions that will be triggered if Mr. Trump commits further violations in future, up to and including permanent removal of his pages and accounts.”
In a statement, Trump whined, “Facebook’s ruling is an insult to the record-setting 75M people, plus many others, who voted for us in the 2020 Rigged Presidential Election. They shouldn’t be able to get away with their censoring and silencing, and ultimately, we will win. Our country can’t take this abuse anymore!”