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Facebook Bans Alex Jones, Milo Yiannopoulos, Other Far-Right Figures

Facebook permanently banned Infowars founder Alex Jones, far-right provocateurs Milo Yiannopoulos and Laura Loomer as well as other prominent far-right figures from its platform on Thursday. The bans follow a previous announcement that the company wasn’t going to allow white nationalism and separatism on its platform anymore.

Other far-right figures affected by the ban include Infowars editor Paul Joseph Watson and white nationalist Paul Nehlen. Also banned from Facebook going forward is Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam, who has been criticized for his frequent antisemitic remarks.

“We’ve always banned individuals or organizations that promote or engage in violence and hate, regardless of ideology,” a Facebook spokesperson told Variety. “The process for evaluating potential violators is extensive and it is what led us to our decision to remove these accounts today.”

The company told reporters that it was banning official accounts maintained by these users, and that it would also take down any supporter accounts set up in their likeness. It will also remove any events that these individuals will be participating in.

Facebook reserved the toughest measures for Jones and his Infowars empire, which frequently spread conspiracy theories on divisive topics, including school shootings and immigration. Not only did Facebook ban Jones and Infowars, it will also take down any Infowars content posted to its platform by any of its users, and any groups meant to spread Infowars content.

Some of the affected accounts remained available on Thursday morning for some time after Facebook’s official announcement. Yiannopoulos, who had more than 400,000 followers on Instagram, used that delay to ask his followers to sign up for his mailing list, only to see the account disappear from the platform minutes later.

Facebook wasn’t the first platform to ban Jones, Loomer and Yiannopoulos. Infowars was banned by Apple, YouTube and Twitter last summer, and both Loomer and Yiannopoulos have been banned by Twitter as well. Facebook at the time removed some pages associated with Infowars, but allowed Jones to remain on the platform.

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