Twitter locks China's US embassy account over defending Muslim Uighurs policy

China has repeatedly rejected accusations of abuse in Xinjiang, where it has been said that at least one million Uighurs and other Muslims had been detained in camps

Twitter has locked the account of China’s US embassy after it tweeted about defending China’s policy towards Muslim Uighurs in Xinjiang.

China’s Foreign Ministry said that it was confused by the move and that it was the embassy’s responsibility to detect disinformation and clarify the truth.

The social media platform said the tweet violated its stand against “dehumanising” people.

Earlier this month China’s US embassy posted a tweet that said that Uighur women had been emancipated and were no longer “baby-making machines”. The tweet was removed by Twitter and replaced by a label stating that it was no longer available.

Twitter usually hides tweets that violate its policies and requires account holders to manually delete the posts. The Chinese embassy’s Twitter account, @ChineseEmbinUS, has not posted any new tweets since January 9.

The suspension of the embassy’s account comes a day after the Trump administration, in its final hours in the White House, accused China of committing genocide in Xinjiang.

China has repeatedly rejected accusations of abuse in Xinjiang, where it has been alleged that at least one million Uighurs and other Muslims had been detained in camps.

Twitter has taken action against China-linked accounts before. In June last year, it removed more than 170,000 accounts it said were tied to a Beijing-backed influence operation that spread messages favourable to the Chinese government.

Twitter has also removed the account of former US president Donald Trump, which had 88 million followers, after saying it caused risk of violence after his supporters stormed the US Capitol in a deadly riot this month.

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