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Facebook Removes More Than 100 Military-Linked Accounts In Pakistan


Facebook has removed 103 pages, groups, and accounts that it said were part of a network linked to the Pakistani military's public relations wing.

The social media giant’s cybersecurity chief, Nathaniel Gleicher, said on April 1 that the accounts' "coordinated inauthentic behaviour" on Facebook and its Instagram network violated the company’s policies.

Facebook found that the accounts were linked to employees of the Pakistani military’s Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Gleicher said in a statement.

He said that ISPR employees were operating military fan pages, as well as pages on the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir, "general Pakistani interest," and local and political news including on topics such as arch-rival India's military and politicians.

More than 2.8 million accounts followed one or more of the pages, Gleicher said.

Facebook said it had also taken down 687 pages and accounts linked to India's main opposition Congress party for "coordinated inauthentic behavior," days before the country’s general elections are scheduled to begin on April 11.

It also banned some accounts linked to an Indian company "associated with" a mobile app promoted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

Facebook has cracked down against troll networks that try to manipulate public opinion around the world.

On March 26, Facebook said it had deleted more than 2,600 fake pages and accounts linked to Russia, Iran, North Macedonia, and Kosovo.

With reporting by dpa, AFP, and Reuters