Meta has dropped the Instagram and Facebook accounts run on behalf of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei for content violation after his support for the Oct. 7 Hamas massacre.
“We have removed these accounts for repeatedly violating our Dangerous Organizations and Individuals policy,” the California-based company said on Friday.
Meta had been under pressure to ban the leader of the Islamic Republic from its social media platforms since the surprise attack by the Iranian-backed terrorist organization which killed around 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and saw about 250 others abducted to Gaza.
Khamenei, who has been in power for more than 34 years, repeatedly praised the assault to his millions of followers on social media.
Immediately after the attack, he backed Hamas in a speech, saying, “We kiss the hands of those who planned the attack on the Zionist regime.”
Instagram and Facebook are banned in Iran but Iranians use virtual private accounts or VPNs to evade restrictions and access prohibited apps such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
Khamenei had five million followers on Instagram.
His accounts on X are still active.
The New York-based Anti-Defamation League lauded the decision to remove his accounts from Instagram and Facebook.
“We’ve long asked Meta to take down the Facebook and Instagram accounts of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and applaud that it’s finally happened,” ADL National Director Jonathan Greenblatt tweeted on Friday. “He’s used these platforms for years to incite violent antisemitism, to legitimize militant antizionism and to make genocidal threats.”