In a piece titled, “Instagram Shuts Down Page of Iran’s Hero General Soleimani Again!” Iran’s state-run FARS News Agency protested the social media platform on Wednesday, which recently shut down IRGC-Quds Forces Gen. Qasem Soleimani’s page for a third time.
“This is the third time that Instagram has forced down General Soleimani’s account,” FARS wrote. “To much surprise, the social media network had also earlier deleted General Soleimani’s post on annihilation of the ISIL terrorist group.”
The Iranian government blocked access to Instagram and Telegram for tens of millions of Iranians soon after the December 28 protests calling for the downing of Iran’s Islamic regime began, in order to stifle the uprising. The United States Department of State announced shortly thereafter that the Trump administration will use Facebook and Twitter to communicate directly with Iranians who are protesting against in Iran’s government.
The Iranian regime’s propaganda arm went on to write, “Instagram, Twitter, and other tech companies claim that they have long policed their content for signs of extremism, but thousands of terrorist and extremist groups are operating on these social media networks.”
Soleimani has been designated as a terrorist by the United States on several occasions. In October, Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) was designated a terrorist entity by the U.S. Department of Treasury.
FARS News—mirroring Iran’s Supreme Leaders Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei—blamed the move to ban Soleimani on America and Israel, writing, “Western and Israeli politicians increasingly have applied pressure on U.S. technology firms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to become more of an active partner in their fight against the popular resistance groups in places like Lebanon and occupied Palestine. So far, Silicon Valley appears to be receptive.”
On Tuesday, Khamenei said,”Americans and Zionists” hatched the “plot” that led to the Iranians protesting against his regime.
FARS News completed its rant by writing, “Social media users in different regional states, including Iraq, Lebanon, and Syria, have on their pages hailed General Soleimani for leading campaign against terrorism in the region.”
In November, Iranian state-run television broadcasted a report showcasing a 13-year-old that was sent to Syria to fight on behalf of dictator Bashar al-Assad, allegedly under the guidance of Gen. Soleimani. The adolescent, named Nemati, said “Martyrdom is an honor I aspire to,” and “As I said to Qasem Soleimani, defending Zeinab is every Shia’s purpose.”