YouTube has removed videos posted by Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro for violating its content policies, in the strongest measure yet that tech giants in the social media-loving country have taken toward censoring the president. VICE News reports: YouTube has said that if Bolsonaro breaks the video-sharing service’s rules again, his channel may be suspended for a week and, in case of recurrence, he should be permanently banned. The video platform told the far-right leader last week that 15 of his videos had been removed from his channel for spreading COVID-19 misinformation — some of which promoted quack coronavirus cures that critics say can sometimes cause collateral health damages like kidney failure.
The news came days after the president was discharged from hospital after undergoing treatment for an intestinal blockage that provoked a 10-day hiccup attack that hindered his ability to speak. President Bolsonaro has so far remained silent on YouTube’s decision, but he’s been increasingly vocal in railing against lockdowns, stirring vaccine suspicions and COVID-related hoaxes, ridiculing people for wearing masks and downplaying the dangers of the virus as “a little flu.” Last year, the former army captain accused the press of “tricking” citizens about the severity of the virus. Over 550,502 Brazilians have died from COVID-19, making the country’s outbreak the world’s second-deadliest after the U.S.
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