The website of Iranian-backed Press TV is reporting that its Facebook page was disabled then restored. According to the website:
January 12, 2021 Facebook briefly disabled Press TV’s account with nearly four million followers, alleging that Iran’s international English news network was not eligible to use the social media platform. In a notification upon taking down the page early on Tuesday, the US-based social media giant said the decision was “final,” adding that it could not provide additional information for “safety and security reasons.” Facebook, however, reversed the decision hours later in response to an appeal filed by Press TV.
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The statement goes on to allude that the reason for the Facebook action was Press TV’s “shocking” coverage of the violence at the US Capitol earlier this month. Both the main Facebook Press TV Facebook page and the UK page are still currently operational.
In October 2020, the Global Influence Operations Report (GIOR) reported that Iran might be forced to shut down Press TV and other foreign language channels due to financial strains caused by US sanctions. In the same report, GIOR noted that Press TV’s YouTube channel had been deleted in January 2020 and that in June 2020, Facebook began to label the channel as “state media.”
Press TV is part of the media structure of the Iranian influence network. It was founded in 2007 and is sponsored by the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting, Iran’s state-run television operation. According to its website, Press TV “takes revolutionary steps as the first English broadcasting international Iranian news network.” Press TV had its UK broadcasting license revoked in January 2012 by British communication’s regulator Ofcom, which found that the channel was running its editorial from Tehran and not from the UK, thus breaching the Communications Act. In the UK, the channel is directed by film director and writer Hamid Khairoldin, who is also connected to other pro-Iranian media outlets. A 2015 report by the US Anti-Defamation League details various antisemitic themes and conspiracy theories promoted in its programs.