Facebook Censors Sandinistas in Nicaragua Days Before Presidential Elections

Social media corporation Facebook, now called Meta, reported that it eliminated an alleged network of trolling accounts aimed at national audiences in Nicaragua. However, activists and supporters of Daniel Ortega’s government allege that their accounts were closed without prior notice and clarified that they are not trolls.

This was stated by Sandinista activist Ligia Sevilla, who reported that she was censored by the social media platform due to content she posted in support of the government of Daniel Ortega, and against the interests of the right-wing opposition in the Central American country, but above all in favor and in defense of the rights won during the Revolution.

In the video, similar to several posted by Sandinista media activists and journalists, Sevilla states: “My name is Ligia Sevilla. I’m not a bot, I’m not a troll, and my social media accounts were censored. Maybe Facebook doesn’t allow us to be Sandinistas?”

The video was posted by The Grayzone journalist with extensive experience in the field in Nicaragua, Ben Norton. This happened just days before Nicaragua’s presidential elections scheduled for November 7. President Daniel Ortega is heading for a new victory, while right-wing opposition elements are boycotting the elections.

Meta said that the action of these alleged trolls was a national operation, with links to multiple government institutions and the FSLN party. “We see no evidence of foreign actors behind this campaign,” the corporation reported. It also mentioned that it eliminated 937 false accounts on its platform. It also deleted 140 pages, 24 groups and 363 Instagram accounts, all of them belonging to the same network.

Mainstream media outlets widely reported that Facebook eliminated or dismantled a network of trolls or a “troll farm,” and reported that the network was linked to the government of Daniel Ortega. Considering the decision within the context of general elections to be held in less than week, and according to right-wing leaders, the objective of the “network” was to flood the community with messages in favor of the government and against the opposition.

Facebook is politics
The Central American country has achieved significant progress in the guarantees of human rights under the Ortega government, even in the midst of economic and media aggressions by the United States and the European Union and their complicit and subservient forces within the Central American country.

The Meta company’s decision to block hundreds of supporters of the Sandinista government, when the elections are this Sunday, November 7, does not seem accidental. In many countries, Facebook participates as the main political actor on the internet. In 2011, for example, at Israel’s request Facebook censored user accounts calling for an uprising in the Palestinian territories.

In an opinion piece, Thierry Meissan highlighted that in 2015, Facebook decided that the Lebanese political party Hezbollah and the Syrian Arab Republic are “terrorist organizations.” Then it closed the accounts of television stations such as the Lebanese news outlet Al-Mayadeen, two Syrian broadcasters Sama TV and Ad Dunia, and private Syrian channel Al Ikhbariya. On the other hand, the company puts various “trainers” at the disposal of jihadists trying to overthrow the Syrian government.

The same columnist and researcher recalled that in 2020, Facebook was involved in colonialist politics with its 2Africa project to install an underwater cable around the entire continent. In this way he concludes that Facebook also functions as a political actor.

 

Featured image: Facebook corporation is known for censoring content by left activists and organizations. In the sketch the hands of Facebook are blocking the mouth and eyes of a stylized face. Image: Adhocnews (Italy).

(RedRadioVE) by Daniela Jiménez, with Orinoco Tribune content

Translation: Orinoco Tribune

OT/JRE/SL

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Daniela Jimenez
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