Twitter Inc. (TWTR) - Get Report locked the account of President Donald Trump Wednesday, and threatened to permanently ban him from the platform, following a series of Tweets that some have alleged incited the violent storming of the Capitol building by his supporters earlier today.
In a statement published by one of Twitter's official accounts, the micro-blogging website said Trump's account, easily the most active of any world leader and one of the most viewed on the site with nearly 89 million followers, would be 'locked' for at least twelve hours for what it called "for repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy."
Trump Tweeted several messages following a rally in downtown Washington during which he repeated several false claims about the integrity of the November election and urged his supports to "keep fighting" and march down Pennsylvania Avenue to confront lawmakers as they verified last month's Electoral College vote.
Twitter flagged most of those Tweets, including a video message in which he again repeated the false assertion that his November election loss to President Elect Joe Biden was a "fraud" before finally locking his account.
"The account of @realDonaldTrump will be locked for 12 hours following the removal of these Tweets. If the Tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked," Twitter said. "Future violations of the Twitter Rules, including our Civic Integrity or Violent Threats policies, will result in permanent suspension of the @realDonaldTrump account."
Twitter shares closed at $53.26 each on the Nasdaq Wednesday, after falling 1.15% on the session to trim the stock's six-month gain to around 61.4%.
President Elect Biden called the events in Washington, which began in the early afternoon, a "siege" as Americans witnessed live images of a mob of Trump supporters overpowering Capitol police, smashing windows and entering the Capitol building to face-down armed guards and scurrying lawmakers.
Washington mayor Muriel Bowser issued a city-wide lockdown that began at 6:00 PM Eastern time, while police officials have told multiple media outlets that one woman involved in the events was shot and killed on Capitol grounds.