Trump slams Facebook for 'censoring and silencing' him after 'insulting' decision to suspend former prez for 2 years

DONALD Trump has slammed Facebook's decision to ban him for two years, calling it an "insult" to MAGA voters but vowed, "we will win."

The former president made the remarks in a scathing statement released just moments after Facebook's independent oversight committee suspended him from the platform until at least January 7, 2023.

"Facebook's ruling is an insult to the record-setting 75 million people, plus many others, who voted for us in the 2020 Rigged Presidential Election," he seethed.

"They shouldn't be allowed to get away with this censoring and silencing, and ultimately, we will win.

"Our Country can't take this abuse anymore!" he added.

Trump was first suspended from Facebook in January over concerns that his posts about the insurrection in DC were inciting violence.

It was the first time Facebook had blocked a current president, prime minister, or head of state.

Facebook's oversight board upheld the ban in May, but gave itself six months to determine specifically how long Trump would be blacklisted before returning its verdict on Friday.

"Given the gravity of the circumstances that led to Mr. Trump's suspension, we believe his actions constituted a severe violation of our rules which merit the highest penalty available under the new enforcement protocols," Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice-president of global affairs, said on Friday.

Facebook said it would only reinstate Trump if "the risk to public safety has receded."

"We will evaluate external factors, including instances of violence, restrictions on peaceful assembly and other markers of civil unrest," the company wrote in a statement.

"If we determine that there is still a serious risk to public safety, we will extend the restriction for a set period of time and continue to re-evaluate until that risk has receded."

Clegg added that once the suspension is lifted, “a strict set of rapidly escalating sanctions” would be triggered if Trump violated Facebook policies again.

Trump previously called the ban a "total disgrace" and an "embarrassment" after it was upheld in May.

"Free Speech has been taken away from the President of the United States because the Radical Left Lunatics are afraid of the truth, but the truth will come out anyway, bigger and stronger than ever before," he wrote in May.

"The People of our Country will not stand for it! These corrupt social media companies must pay a political price, and must never again be allowed to destroy and decimate our Electoral Process."

The suspension also applies to Instagram, which is owned by Facebook.

He was banned from several other major tech platforms including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat after the riots.

To reach supporters, Trump has instead had to rely on press releases, personal messages, television interviews, emails and robocalls.

Earlier this week he pulled the plug on his blog, called From the Desk of Donald Trump, after just 29 days because of low readership.

Should Trump's ban be lifted on January 7, 2023, as slated, Facebook will be handing him back to reigns to a powerful social media megaphone just in time for the 2024 election.

While Trump hasn't yet publicly declared if he'll run, sources close to Trump said he will if he's in a "strong position" after the 2022 midterms.

"If the president feels like he's in a good position, I think there's a good chance that he does it," Trump adviser Jason Miller told NBC on Tuesday.

"For the more immediate impact, there's the issue of turning out Trump voters for the midterm elections," Miller continued, before adding: "President Trump is the leader of the Republican Party."

Trump himself has also previously suggested he will announce his decision on the matter after the midterms.

In an interview with Fox News' Dan Bongino last month, he said: "So I'm giving it very serious consideration.

"If you do it, I think probably the most appropriate time would be right after the '22 election, that's my opinion. Could do it sooner, but I think right after the election would be good, especially if you have a good election."

Trump will return to the political arena on Saturday to give the headline speech at the North Carolina Republican Party's state convention.

Also on Friday, Facebook unveiled new "enforcement protocols" and said it would no longer grant special exemptions to politicians when they break the company’s hate speech rules.

In announcing their decision on Trump, Facebook's Nick Clegg acknowledged that news of the ban would not be well received on either side of the political aisle.

"There are many people who believe it was not appropriate for a private company like Facebook to suspend an outgoing President from its platform, and many others who believe Mr. Trump should have immediately been banned for life," he wrote.

"Our job is to make a decision in as proportionate, fair and transparent a way as possible, in keeping with the instruction given to us by the Oversight Board."

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