Twitter announced Thursday that it deleted more than 170,000 accounts tied to the Chinese government. The accounts were pushing narratives around the Hong Kong protests and Covid-19 that Twitter considered deceptive. Twitter is officially blocked in China.
Many of the accounts had only been set up this year and were classified in two categories. 23,750 accounts were tied to a core network that tweeted content favorable to China. 170,000 accounts were then used to amplify the content via retweets. In total, the 23,740 accounts tweeted 348,608 times that were amplied hundreds of millions of times.
The company also says it shutdown accounts related to Russia. More than 1,000 accounts belonging to the United Russia party were shutdown.
In addition, 7,340 accounts related to Turkey were shutdown. They had tweeted more than 37 million times.
Tweets from many of the accounts Twitter shut down will be posted by the company to an archive where they can be studied.