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Fb Targets 'Dangerous' Armed Groups In Latest Myanmar Bans

Facebook has banned four insurgent groups fighting against Myanmar’s military from its social network, saying it wanted to prevent offline harm by removing groups it branded “dangerous organisations”. The U S-based social media giant says it has removed hundreds of accounts, pages and groups for links to Myanmar’s military, or misrepresentation, since last August. The action came after Fb was criticized for not doing enough to prevent violent and hate-filled content spreading on its platform, which grew hugely popular in Myanmar just as conflicts in the country escalated. The Arakan Army, the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army, Kachin Independence Army and the Ta’ang National Liberation Army were banned. Fb added that it would remove “praise, support and representation” of the groups. The four groups have not signed a government-led ceasefire agreement and have frequently clashed with the armed forces in recent years. Fb said there was “clear evidence that these organizations have been responsible for attacks against civilians and have engaged in violence in Myanmar, and we want to prevent them from using our services to further inflame tensions on the ground”. Some accounts related to Myanmar’s armed forces were first removed last August after a U.N. fact-finding mission called for top Myanmar generals to be prosecuted for what it said was a campaign of mass killings and gang rape against the Rohingya Muslim minority carried out with “genocidal intent”. In 2017, the military led a crackdown in Myanmar’s Rakhine State in response to attacks by Rohingya insurgents, pushing more than 730,000 Rohingya to neighboring Bangladesh, according to U.N. agencies.