- The Twitter accounts of at least two Taliban officials sported blue ticks on Monday, according to the BBC.
- It sparked outrage and on Tuesday the ticks appeared to have been removed.
- Governments around the world are still debating whether to recognize the hardline Islamist regime.
The BBC reported on Monday that the Twitter accounts of at least two Taliban officials and four well-known regime supporters sported checkmarks. They understand Hedayatullah Hedayat, head of the Taliban department for “access to information”, and Abdul Haq Hammad, who heads the regime’s media watchdog. They have around 190,000 and 170,000 subscribers respectively.
The accounts are no longer accompanied by the checkmarks on Tuesday evening.
It’s unclear if Twitter removed the blue badges from Taliban-linked accounts, or if the account owners unfollowed the Blue Twitter a service. Hedayat’s account had its paid blue tick last removed in December, the BBC reported citing local media.
Twitter and the Afghan Ministry of Information and Culture did not immediately respond to Insider’s requests for comment sent outside of normal business hours. Twitter’s new owner Elon Musk has dissolved the company communications team.
Twitter Blue is a paid subscription service that charges users with a blue checkmark next to their account names and provides early access to certain features. The program costs $8 per month for web users in the US and is one of CEO Elon Musk’s strategies to monetize the platform – which he says was losing $4 million a day.
The presence of the Taliban on Western social networks is a point of contention and controversy because United States and governments around the world are debating whether to recognize the hardline Islamist regime. Since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan in the summer of 2021, he committed numerous human rights violations, The United Nations mission to the country declared in July 2022. The regime has also forbidden women to attend universities.
Social media platforms also had to make a choice — facebook and youtube banned the Taliban, but not Twitter. Former President Donald Trump denounced the presence of the Taliban on Twitter in October 2021, months after his own account was posted. permanently suspended.
“We live in a world where the Taliban are very active on Twitter, but your favorite American president has been silenced,” he added. trump said in a Press release announcing the launch of Truth Social in October 2021. “This is unacceptable.”
Trump’s account has been reinstated by Elon Musk, the new owner of Twitter, in November 2022.