Former US President Donald Trump (76) will return to the social media channels Facebook and Instagram. At least this step is allowed by the parent company Meta behind it. As a company spokesman announced on Wednesday, Trump's ban will be lifted in the next few weeks after around two years. An exact time for the reactivation has not yet been given.
Instagram and Facebook accounts were suspended after Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol in January 2021. At the time, Trump incited the crowd in a speech and previously used his social media channels to make the refuted claim that he only lost the US election to Joe Biden (80) through manipulation and was still the rightful president.
In a letter a few days ago, Trump's lawyer asked Meta boss Mark Zuckerberg (38) to reactivate the accounts. This was reported, among other things, by the "Washington Post". The lockdown "dramatically distorted and inhibited public discourse." His client should not be "gagged". That's why the reactivation of Trump's account should be checked from January 7th. The attorney also requested a meeting "to discuss President Trump's immediate reinstatement on the platform."
His client is "a declared candidate for the office of President of the United States," the letter said. Trump is also the "leading contender for the Republican nomination in numerous public opinion polls." A continued Facebook ban would therefore represent a "deliberate attempt by a private company to silence Mr Trump's political voice".
Meta initially suspended Trump's account indefinitely. After massive criticism, the suspension was later reduced to two years and it was declared that the case would then be reexamined. It is crucial for reactivation whether the risk to public safety has decreased enough for Trump's account to be restored. Earlier this year, a Meta spokesman said the company would soon announce a decision on whether Trump could be reinstated "in the coming weeks, consistent with the process we have established."