Is Facebook suspending accounts of activists highlighting plight of Rohingyas?
The alleged large-scale violence perpetrated against the minority Rohingya community in Myanmar by the military of the country has left the whole world aghast in the last few weeks.
According to reports by the United Nations (UN), in the last one month more than four lakh Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar have fled to Bangladesh to save themselves from getting killed in their homeland.
All the struggles and plights of the Rohingyas, who are poor and voiceless, have been highlighted by a group of activists who have been constantly documenting and narrating the "ethnic cleansing" of the minority community on social media to the rest of the world.
Now, reports say Facebook has allegedly removed posts and suspended accounts of activists who are documenting the "ethnic cleansing" of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar.
According to Daily Beast, the activists said their accounts are frequently being suspended or taken down and hoped that the social media giant would let them speak the truth.
"We want Facebook to be a place where people can share responsibly and we work hard to strike the right balance between enabling expression while providing a safe and respectful experience," Facebook spokesperson Ruchika Budhraja told Daily Beast on Wednesday.
"In response to the situation in Myanmar, we are carefully reviewing content against our Community Standards," Budhraja added.
An activist who uses the name Rahim said Facebook has removed individual posts he put on the site about Rohingya refugees. He also alleged that his account was repeatedly disabled by Facebook.
"We removed this content because it doesn't follow the Facebook Community Standards," read a message from Facebook.
On Tuesday, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres asked Myanmar to halt its military campaign against Rohingya Muslims. Guterres address came just hours after Aung San Suu Kyi failed to quell an international outcry in a much-anticipated address.
Addressing the opening of the UN General Assembly, Guterres said he "took note" of Suu Kyi's pledge to abide by the recommendations of a report by former UN chief Kofi Annan that has advocated citizenship for the Rohingyas.
"But let me be clear," Guterres said. "The authorities in Myanmar must end the military operations, and allow unhindered humanitarian access."
In her nationwide address, Suu Kyi insisted that army "clearance operations" in response to attacks by Rohingya militants had finished on September 5 and denied that Rakhine was in flames.
"More than 50 percent of the villages of Muslims are intact," she said.