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Brazilian senators ask high court to ban President Bolsonaro from social media

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Following video posts claiming COVID-vaccines are bad for people, Brazilian senators have requested the country’s high court suspend President Jair Bolsonaro from all social media platforms.

On Tuesday, members of the Brazilian Senate called on the high court to ban the president from Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter, after he posted a video linking COVID-19 vaccines to immune deficiency syndrome.

Bolsonaro made the claim in his live weekly address on Facebook and Instagram. The video was also posted on YouTube. Both platforms flagged the videos for misinformation, with YouTube going a step further by suspending him for a week.

In the video, the Brazilian President said: “I’m just going to report it, I won’t comment. I’ve talked about it in the past, I’ve been beaten a lot… here we go: official UK government reports suggest that the fully vaccinated… Who are the fully vaccinated?”

“Second dose, right… 15 days later, 15 days after the second dose… fully vaccinated… They are developing Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) much faster than expected.

“So, read the article, I won’t read it here because I may have a problem with my live [stream].”

The senators’ request for the president’s banning from social media came as the Senate Commission, which has been investigating the government’s pandemic response, is preparing to vote on a final report.

The Senate Commission is recommending multiple criminal charges for the president, including crimes against humanity because he has continually downplayed the severity of the pandemic and disregarded advice from medical experts.

This was not the first time Bolsonaro has had his posts censored or removed by social media platforms. In July alone, YouTube took down 15 of his videos.

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