Meta will allow former President Donald Trump to return to Facebook and Instagram in the coming weeks, the company announced, two years after his suspension was enacted following the 2021 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.
"As a general rule, we don't want to get in the way of open, public and democratic debate on Meta's platforms – especially in the context of elections in democratic societies like the United States," Nick Clegg, Meta's president of global affairs, wrote in a blog post announcing the decision. "The public should be able to hear what their politicians are saying – the good, the bad and the ugly – so that they can make informed choices at the ballot box."
Facebook, Twitter and Google -owned YouTube all made the unprecedented decision to block the sitting U.S. president from their platforms at the time, after they determined doing so outweighed the risk of potential further incitement of violence. The platforms' bans varied in their degrees, however, with Twitter opting for a permanent ban and Facebook saying its suspension was temporary, eventually setting a timeline of two years before it reviewed the decision.
The suspensions came after a mob charged into the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, as lawmakers worked to certify the election of President Joe Biden. Then-Vice President Mike Pence was whisked away to a secure location by the Secret Service, recognizing the danger to him as he oversaw what's usually a routine procedure in Congress.