Twitter has blocked 16 accounts connected to a network that spreads propaganda across Middle Eastern countries.

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Twitter said Monday it blocked 16 accounts that were discovered as part of a network of counterfeit people who spread propaganda about Middle East countries. The accounts were blocked for violating the social media company's platform manipulation policy.

"With technology, human screening, and partnerships with researchers and other independent organizations that investigate these issues, we're working to identify and manipulate platforms in our service," said a Twitter spokesman in a statement. "If we can reasonably demonstrate that an activity can be assigned to a government-sponsored information operation, we will – after a thorough investigation – disclose it to our public archive."

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The accounts belong to a network of at least 19 accounts of fictional individuals who have planted more than 90 opinions in 46 different publications over the past year, according to The Daily Beast, who first reported on the network after investigating its operations. The articles were widely praised for the United Arab Emirates, while the Daily Beast called for a tougher stance on Qatar, Turkey and Iran.

Opinions have been published in conservative publications such as the Washington Examiner, RealClear Markets, American Thinker and The National Interest.

The suspensions are part of Twitter's effort to contain misinformation shared on the platform. Twitter's fight against misinformation campaigns started in 2018 when more than a was deleted Millions of fake accounts.

In June, Twitter announced that it had permanent 32,242 accounts removed These were state-sponsored operations that spread political propaganda from China, Russia, and Turkey.

The Middle East propaganda network personas had fake background stories or wrong academic or professional qualifications to strengthen their credibility, the Daily Beast reported, including some who pretended to be journalists, while others described themselves as "senior analysts for international relations" . They used stolen avatars that were manipulated to avoid reverse image recognition and intensified the work of others, the Daily Beast found out.


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