A Muslim advocacy group applauded Facebook’s announcement Thursday of its ban on high-profile critics of radical Islam, including Milo Yiannopoulos, Alex Jones and Laura Loomer.
Madihha Ahussain, special counsel for Muslim Advocates, thanked the social media giant for taking a “positive step toward removing hate actors from the company’s platforms.”
He pointed to the shooting at the Chabad of Poway synagogue and the mosque massacre in New Zealand as recent examples “of the deadly consequences of hate.”
“Individuals like Laura Loomer, Alex Jones and Milo Yiannopoulos have used social media platforms to broadcast dangerous hate speech and conspiracies targeting Muslims, Jews and others,” he said. “Removing them from Facebook and Instagram will go a long way towards ensuring the safety of their users.
“However, many individuals and hate groups such as the virulently anti-Muslim Act for America remain on Facebook and continue to use the company’s platforms to organize and perpetuate hate and bigotry,” he said.
Facebook announced Thursday afternoon that along with Milo, Jones and Loomer, it also banned Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, known for his anti-Semitic remarks, CNN reported.
The company described the banned members as “dangerous.”
Jones and his media outlet InfoWars were banned from Facebook in August 2018. On Thursday, Facebook also banned him and InfoWars from Instagram, which it owns.
Paul Joseph Watson, who has written for Jones’ websites, also was banned Thursday.
“We’ve always banned individuals or organizations that promote or engage in violence and hate, regardless of ideology,” a Facebook spokesman said in a statement provided to CNN Business.
“The process for evaluating potential violators is extensive and it is what led us to our decision to remove these accounts today.”
The spokesman said that in some instances, when Facebook bans an individual or organization, it also restricts others from expressing praise or support for them on its platforms.