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Twitter blocks access to neo-Nazi account for German users

It’s the first time the social media site has implemented its local censorship policy, which was first announced in January.

Image: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire/Press Association Images

TWITTER HAS BLOCKED user access to a neo-Nazi account from within Germany - implementing its new local censorship policy for the first time.

The decision to block access came following a request by the German government to ban the account. It will mean users in Germany will not be able to view or respond to tweets, but users in other countries will continue to have access.

In January, Twitter announced a local censorship policy, which explains that the site’s goal is to “respect our users’ expression while also taking into consideration applicable local laws”.

Announcing the decision, the social media site’s general counsel Alex Macgillivary tweeted: “Never want to withhold content; good to have tools to do it narrowly & transparently”, and included links to the letter sent by German police to the company requesting that the account be banned.

In the letter, the German authorities in the state of Lower Saxony explained they had banned the right-wing extremist group Besseres Havover (“Better Hanover”), seized its assets, and charged members of the group with creating a criminal organisation and attempting to incite racial hatred.

Germany has strict laws against the use of Nazi slogans and symbols.

Read: MEP Nick Griffin says he will not apologise for ‘Fenian’ comment on Twitter>

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