Facebook and Twitter reportedly shut down several accounts associated with Hamas, the Palestinian Sunni-Islamic fundamentalist group, over the weekend of April 22. This came after accusations that the organization had been using social media platforms to spread hate throughout the Web.
Hamas' official page was shut down on Facebook, and its "Shibab" page was also closed shortly after. The page had been affiliated with terrorism, and more than one million Facebook users had been following it at the time of its closure.
During the week of April 18, Facebook honed in on several Palestinian university pages that had connections to Hamas. They were eventually taken down, as were those that referenced the Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Hamas was allegedly utilizing these pages to further develop terrorism plans on the Internet.
Twitter has been taking its own initiative to shut down potentially dangerous accounts. Hamas' military wing pages, which were published in languages including English and Hebrew, were closed by Twitter. However, users have been working to restore their presence on social media by creating new accounts where they can continue to spread their message.
One individual who saw his account suspended by Twitter was Hamas Military Wing Spokesman Abu Obeida. His page was closed during a wave of account suspensions. However, Obeida has created a new Twitter account to reestablish his speaking platform on the social network.
"Twitter yielded to the pressure of the enemy, which gives us an impression that it is not neutral in regards to the Palestinian case and it caves into political pressure," Obeida wrote on his Twitter page. "We are going to send our message in a lot of innovative ways, and we will insist on every available means of social media to get to the hearts and minds of millions."
This is not the first time that social networks such as Facebook and Twitter have moved to eliminate terrorism from their websites. During the summer of 2014, for instance, Twitter shut down all Hamas accounts.
Details of a new report revealed on April 25 that many terrorist financiers who have been blacklisted by the U.S. government are still raising money via social media, according to the Wall Street Journal.