It is for the second time in less than three months for Facebook to take action in connection with users and contents that are said to have targeted Ethiopia
Facebook on Wednesday said that it had removed fake accounts ( individual and group accounts) that targeted users in Ethiopia as the national election is set to take place on Monday.
The accounts are closed on grounds of Facebook policy violations that prohibit “coordinated inauthentic behaviour.”
“Given the upcoming election and the ongoing tensions in Ethiopia, our teams moved as quickly as possible to complete the investigation and disrupt this operation,” said Nathaniel Gleicher, Facebook’s head of security policy in a press conference, as quoted by Cnet.com
According to a report by Reuters, the networks that are closed post current affairs and news contents. It is said that ” the network posted critical commentary about opposition politicians and groups including the Oromo Liberation Front, Ethiopian Democratic Party, and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front among others.”
Based on the report, the accounts are “linked to individuals associated with the country’s Information Network Security Agency.”
Reuters said that the INSA director did not immediately remark on the allegations. Billene Seyoum, press secretary in the office of prime minister, was asked for a remark, and she is quoted as saying ““INSA is under the ministry of peace and an independent institution – you can address your question there.”
It is for the second time for Facebook to take actions in connection with Ethiopia in less than three months. In March this year, it announced that it has removed dozens of facebook individual and group accounts , including those based in Egypt, that aimed to promote hate in Ethiopia – a country that was affected by the worst ethnic based violence in the past three years.
Ethiopia’s election is scheduled to take place on June 21 but there are also areas that will not vote on that day due to security and logistical problems. In the affected areas, elections will take place in early September.