Social media platforms including Twitter
parent Meta said Friday they’re taking down any videos of the assassination of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. The companies say such videos violate their rules of harmful content on the platform.
Multiple videos of the attack showing a gunman firing a double-barreled weapon twice at Abe were circulating on social media. Some only show the moments before and after the attack while others show both shots.
Abe, who stepped down in 2020, was shot during a speech, airlifted to a hospital, and later pronounced dead. Police arrested the suspected gunman at the scene.
“We are deeply saddened and shocked at the passing of the former Prime Minister of Japan, Mr. Shinzo Abe,” Meta said in a statement.
“We do not and will not tolerate any violent behavior on our platform. To keep our platform a safe place to connect, we are working to remove any violating content related to the incident,” it said. Meta said such actions apply to both Facebook and Instagram.
Twitter said its enforcement teams were working to “address harmful content” relating to the attack by “proactively removing” material that violates its rules, which include restrictions on sensitive media including graphic violence.
Twitter urged users to flag any material of the attack on Abe that they think should be treated as sensitive so it can take action.
President Joe Biden on Friday said in a statement that he was “stunned, outraged, and deeply saddened” by the killing of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who was 67. Abe’s “vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific will endure,” he continued.
Other world leaders expressed shock over Abe’s assassination, with individuals like Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken all condemning the attack against Abe.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.