Israel, Meta blocks pro-Palestine Instagram accounts: it’s controversial

Over 200 reports of ‘censorship’

Numerous Pro-Palestinian Instagram accounts have been blocked by Meta for security reasons. The decision is only the latest chapter in very tense weeks between the company, which also owns Facebook, and various pro-Palestine pages which in recent days have complained about aexcessive and unjustified censorship towards your posts. Meta said that “the accounts were initially blocked for security reasons following signs of compromise, and we are working to contact the owners to ensure they have access.”

The label ‘terrorist’ appeared on many accounts

In recent weeks, Instagram users have accused the platform of having censored and banned many posts supporting Palestine, sharing examples of stories and reels featuring reports from Gaza that received significantly fewer viewers than pro-Israel videos. Last week, Instagram also apologized for having added the word “terrorist” to some Palestinian user profiles. The problem, which the company attributed to a bug, arose when many users complained about the incorrect translation of the word “alhamdulillah” written in Arabic, which means “thank God” but which the social network automatically translated into “terrorists”. . The controversy quickly mounted as many activists and supporters of the Palestinian people had added the Arabic wording to their biography. The problem has been resolved by Meta.

Page closed with videos and testimonies from Gaza

An Instagram page with more than 6 million followers, @eye.on.palestine, has not been visible since Wednesday evening. The backup profile is also not viewable. The page regularly posts images and videos from Gaza and is a major social source of Palestinian experiences. It is not the first time that @eye.on.palestine has been blocked: last year the page was temporarily suspended for “not respecting” community guidelines.

Over 238 episodes of censorship

The social media watchdog group 7amleh, which monitors cases of silencing of Palestinian voices, has documented more than 238 episodes of censorship in the last weeks. 7amleh director Nadim Nashif revealed that he had “uncovered a disturbing pattern of silencing of Palestinian voices and free expression, especially on Meta platforms. Palestinian content is unfairly targeted, while hate speech and incitement against Palestinians are largely unchecked. Censorship is rampant, limited in scope, suffocating removals and restrictions for media, journalists and influencers, particularly the Eye on Palestine account. This crackdown prevents the world from hearing the truth from the ground.”