Twitter takes down accounts tracking Russian troop movement as war begins

Twitter suspended accounts that were tracking Russian military movements – saying the action was taken in error.

About a dozen accounts, which had been sharing footage of Russian troops approaching Ukraine and other important information about the coming war, were taken down by Twitter.

The account largely belonged to researchers, who were using them to share material taken from social media in an attempt to track the crisis in Ukraine.

The accounts were told that they had been locked because they violated Twitter’s rules, but not which of the rules had been broken.

Twitter said that the suspensions had in fact been a mistake, and not the result of a bot campaign or mass reporting. Researchers had expressed concern that the locks could be the result of co-ordinated campaigns to take them offline.

“We’ve been proactively monitoring for emerging narratives that are violative of our policies, and, in this instance, we took enforcement action on a number of accounts in error,” a Twitter spokesperson said in a statement. “We’re expeditiously reviewing these actions and have already proactively reinstated access to a number of affected accounts.”

The Twitter spokesperson said the erroneous action had been based on its rules against synthetic and manipulated media.

Ukraine declared a state of emergency on Wednesday and told its citizens in Russia to flee, while Moscow began evacuating its Kyiv embassy in the latest ominous signs for Ukrainians who fear an…

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