'I’M BACK!': Trump posts as he returns to Facebook after reinstatement

Meta confirmed it restored former US President's accounts on its Facebook and Instagram platforms on February 9 after it and Youtube had banned the leader following his supporters storming the US Capitol on January 2021

By AP

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Published: Sat 18 Mar 2023, 7:24 PM

Former US President Donald Trump has returned to Facebook after a more-than-two-year ban.

“I’M BACK!” Trump posted on the site weeks after his personal account was reactivated. Trump, who is running his third campaign for the White House, also shared an old video clip in which he said: “Sorry to keep you waiting. Complicated business.”

He posted the same clip on YouTube, which announced on Friday that it, too, was welcoming him back.

Facebook parent Meta had said in January that it would be restoring Trump ’s personal account in the coming weeks, ending the suspension it imposed in the wake of the January 6, 2021 insurrection, when Trump supporters violently stormed the US Capitol in a bid to halt the peaceful transition of power.

His access was restored to Facebook and Instagram on February 9, the company confirmed.

“The public should be able to hear what their politicians are saying — the good, the bad and the ugly — so that they can make informed choices at the ballot box,” Nick Clegg, Meta’s vice-president of global affairs, wrote at the time.

The company also said it would be adding “new guardrails” to ensure there are no “repeat offenders” who violate its rules, even if they are political candidates or world leaders.

Facebook, the world’s largest social media site, had been both a publicity tool and a crucial source of fundraising revenue for both of Trump's previous campaigns.

YouTube, earlier on Friday, announced in a tweet: “Starting today, the Donald J. Trump channel is no longer restricted and can upload new content."

It added: “We carefully evaluated the continued risk of real-world violence, while balancing the chance for voters to hear equally from major national candidates in the run up to an election.”

Twitter also reinstated Trump's account last year after Elon Musk took over the company, but the former president has thus far chosen not to tweet.

Instead, he has been posting frequently on his own Truth Social site, which he launched after the suspensions.

A Trump campaign spokesman and Meta representative both declined to comment.

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