Twitter removes Khamenei tweet calling US, UK vaccines ‘untrustworthy’

TEHRAN, Iran — Twitter has removed a tweet by Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei suggesting coronavirus vaccines made in the United States and Britain are “untrustworthy,” saying the post violated its rules.

“Importing vaccines made in the US or the UK is prohibited. They’re completely untrustworthy. It’s not unlikely they would want to contaminate other nations,” said a tweet posted yesterday on Khamenei’s English-language Twitter account.

“Given our experience with France’s HIV-tainted blood supplies, French vaccines aren’t trustworthy either,” the Iranian leader added in the tweet with the hashtag #CoronaVaccine.

Twitter later removed the tweet and replaced it with a message that said it was “no longer available because it violated the Twitter Rules.”

A spokesperson for Twitter says the tweet “violates… specifically our Covid-19 misleading information policy.”

“The account owner will be required to delete the violative Tweet before regaining access to their account,” the spokesperson for the US-based social network giant says.

The US social media company announced a policy in December to crack down on what it described as potentially “false or misleading information” about COVID-19 vaccinations.

Such false claims, it said, include statements about vaccines that invoke deliberate conspiracy and those suggesting that vaccines are used to harm or control populations.