Twitter suspends Thai royalist account linked to influence campaign

Twitter has suspended a Thai pro-royalist account linked to the palace that a Reuters analysis found was connected to thousands of others created in recent weeks spreading posts in favour of King Maha Vajiralongkorn and the monarchy.

The Reuters review found tens of thousands of tweets that an expert said appeared to be from accounts amplifying royalist messaging in a push to counter a months-long protest movement that has swelled from opposing the government to breaking a longstanding taboo by challenging the monarchy. Internal army training documents reviewed by Reuters showed evidence of a coordinated information campaign designed to spread favorable information and discredit opponents.

The pro-monarchy @jitarsa_school account was suspended after Reuters sought comment on Wednesday from Twitter on the recent royalist campaign on the social media platform, where protesters have long had a strong presence. Protesters and royalists have cited the importance of social media in propelling the protest movement, which has become the biggest challenge in decades to the monarchy as well as the government of former junta leader Prayuth Chan-ocha.

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