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Israel, Facebook at Odds over Removal of ‘Extremist’ Posts

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. PHOTO: Jewish Business News

Facebook defends its flagging policies after Israel demands the social media giant removes questionable posts itself.

3 July 2016

REUTERS — Facebook is doing its share to remove abusive content from the social network, it said on Sunday in an apparent rejection of Israeli allegations that it was uncooperative in stemming messages that might spur Palestinian violence.

Beset by a 10-month-old surge in Palestinian street attacks, Israel says that Facebook has been used to perpetuate such bloodshed and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s rightist government is drafting legislation to enable it to order social media sites to remove postings deemed threatening.

Ramping up the pressure, Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan on Saturday accused Facebook of “sabotaging” Israeli police efforts by not cooperating with inquiries about potential suspects in the occupied West Bank and by “set(ting) a very high bar for removing inciteful content and posts”.

Facebook did not respond directly to Erdan’s criticism, but said in a statement that it conferred closely with Israel.

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