Social Media Censorship of Gen. Soleimani Sign of His Greatness: Iran Culture Minister

12:42 - January 04, 2022
News ID: 3477221
TEHRAN (IQNA) – Iran’s Culture Minister Mohammad Mehdi Esmaeili deplored social media platforms’ move to censor photos and written material about Martyr Qassem Soleimani, saying it shows the importance of what Haj Qassem did. 

Iran's Culture Minister


Speaking at a conference held Monday under the title of “General Soleimani, Defender of Freedom, Security and Peaceful Coexistence of Faiths”, Esmaeili said that social media platforms claim to protect freedom of speech but they censor the name and photos of Martyr Soleimani.

This not only reveals their hypocrisy and duplicity but also demonstrates how great was the work that General Soleimani did, he said.

The Iranian official added that two years after the martyrdom of General Soleimani, his legacy continues to shine in the world despite enemy attempts to obscure it.

Other speakers at the conference, which was organized by the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization, included leaders of monotheistic faiths from Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and Iran.

In their addresses, they highlighted Martyr Soleimani’s role in defending the rights of followers of different faiths and in confronting extremism in the region.

Earlier this week, Iran’s Ministry of Information and Communications Technology urged directors of Meta and Instagram social media platforms to end censorship of written material as well as photos related to the country’s top anti-terror commander.

The call was made in a letter written to directors of Facebook and Instagram by the Iranian ministry’s director general for legal affairs, Reza Fazel, who condemned the measure taken by the two social media platforms and asked for an explanation on their illegal policy toward their users.

The letter was primarily sent to Mark Zuckerberg, the chief executive officer of Meta Platforms, Inc., which is the parent organization of Facebook and Instagram, while copies of the letter were forwarded to Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, and the current Chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission of the United States Jessica Rosenworcel.

The letter added that deletion and censorship of the photos and written material related to Lt. Gen. Soleimani, who is a well-known hero of the fight against terrorism and eradicator of the Daesh (ISIL or ISIS) Takfiri terrorist group, “does not conform to any international norm.”

January 3, 2022 marks the second anniversary of the cowardly assassination of General Qassem Soleimani, who was even admired by the Western media for defeating Daesh and who was killed by extremist warmongers in the former US president Donald Trump's administration while on an official diplomatic trip to Iraq, the Iranian ministry said.

Following this terrorist attack, the letter added, while many regional nations were mourning the top commander's assassination, Instagram began to delete all content related to General Soleimani heedless of international regulations in a widespread online censorship, which was unprecedented in the history of social networks.

Since then, millions of Iranian and non-Iranian Instagram users have been banned from sharing photos, texts and any information related to their beloved hero and they have not been even given any explanation in this regard or any instructions on ways to recover their account, it added.

Iran’s human rights chief also reacted to social media censorship of photos and texts related to Gen. Soleimani, urging people all over the world to file complaints or objections against this “anti-human rights act.”

Kazem Gharibabadi, who is vice-president of Iran’s Judiciary for international affairs and secretary general of the country's High Council for Human Rights, made the call in a Monday tweet, saying, “Tens of millions of posts regarding this great national hero have been deleted by Instagram under the pretext of its so-called policy on violence.”

Slamming Instagram’s anti-human rights policy, the Iranian official added, “After physical assassination of Martyr Soleimani, a harbinger in fight against terrorism, he was also virtually assassinated.”

The letter further said Instagram executives are expected to respect millions of users who adore this anti-terror hero and end this widespread censorship as soon as possible.  






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