Tommy Robinson and Katie Hopkins reinstated on X as Elon Musk overturns Twitter bans

The far-right commentators had been banned in 2018 and 2020 for breaching the site’s hateful conduct code

Holly Evans
Monday 06 November 2023 10:33 GMT
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Katie Hopkins and Tommy Robinson have had their accounts reinstated on the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

Hopkins, who first rose to fame in the third series of The Apprentice, was permanently banned in 2020 for breaching the site’s rules on “abuse and hateful conduct”.

At the time, she had over one million followers, and had incited backlash after criticising the Black Lives Matter movement and sparking a feud with footballer Marcus Rashford over his lobbying for the extension of the free school meal scheme.

Tommy Robinson thanked Elon Musk for overturning the ban (Kirsty O’Connor/PA) (PA Wire)

Robinson, the former leader of the far-right English Defence League, had his account deactivated in 2018 for breaching Twitter’s “hateful conduct” policy.

In her first post on the platform, Hopkins said: “Thank you @elonmusk. And thank you to all the Twitter family who have brought Tommy & I back to @X.

“Know this. You are not alone. We are many. And we are stronger together. The fight back for your freedom is on.”

In his first comeback post, Robinson shared a clip from the video for David Hasselhoff’s 1989 song Looking For Freedom - with his own face superimposed over the Baywatch star’s. Hasselhoff famously performed the song at the Berlin Wall weeks after it fell.

In later posts Robinson thanked X owner Elon Musk, adding: “I’ve been censored, attacked, slandered & imprisoned for shining a light on uncomfortable truths that our government wish to hide, the public are now aware I was telling the truth. We have lots to do.”

Sharing a video of himself speaking outside the Old Bailey, he also tweeted: “They were fearful of our ability to awaken the masses, they attacked us, they demonised us, they slandered us , they imprisoned us, but they never broke us. I’d like to thank everyone of you who supported me & refused to accept their lies.”

In 2021, Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, was sued by a Syrian schoolboy after a video of him being attacked at school when viral.

Shortly after the incident, Robinson falsely claimed in Facebook videos that the teenager “attacks young English girls”, and was ordered to pay £100,000 in damages.

Since being reinstated on X, he has 345,000 followers while Hopkins has a following of 963,000.

Nick Lowles, CEO of HOPE not hate said: “Reinstating Tommy Robinson and Katie Hopkins means Elon Musk is allowing hateful content and misinformation to take place on his watch on X/Twitter.

“At a time of when extremists on all sides are whipping up fear and hate over the conflict in the Middle East, often on X/Twitter, allowing two of Britain’s most prominent anti-Muslim activists back will only make matters worse.

“We will be writing to X to make it clear that danger that their content poses.”

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