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Laura Loomer: Alt-right commentator chains herself to Twitter HQ after being banned but gives up after two hours

Conspiracy theorist wears yellow star during brief protest, which ends when she has to ask police officers to free her from her own cuffs

Zamira Rahim
Friday 30 November 2018 10:49 GMT
Laura Loomer chains herself to door of Twitter HQ

Laura Loomer, a far-right conspiracy theorist and activist, handcuffed herself to the front door of Twitter's headquarters in New York City on Thursday, after she was banned from the platform for hate speech.

But the protest ended just over two hours later, with little fanfare, when Ms Loomer had to ask police officers to help free her from the cuffs.

The 25-year-old was permanently banned from the social media platform on 21 November after she posted a tweet attacking Ilhan Omar, an incoming congresswoman who is Muslim.

Ms Loomer's tweet, which accused the politician of being "anti Jewish" and supporting sharia law, was deemed by Twitter to have violated the company's rules against hateful conduct.

The 25-year-old was banned for hate speech (Periscope)

Facebook soon followed suit and has also banned the conspiracy theorist.

In response, Ms Loomer spent her short protest dressed in a sweater which had #STOPTHEBIAS written on the back.

The 25-year-old also wore a yellow star, similar to those that Jewish people in Europe were forced to wear in Nazi Germany.

Ms Loomer spent part of her time on Thursday shouting at Twitter employees, telling them that they worked for an "evil" company.

Having only attached herself to one of the two doors, the activist did not fully obstruct the entrance and the company's employees seemed largely unconcerned by the protest as they walked past her.

"They don't want you guys to know the truth," she told other passers by.

The conspiracy theorist alleged that she had been "silenced" for being a "Jewish conservative journalist" and that Twitter was "upholding sharia law" through the act of banning her.

"We have notified the relevant authorities who are responding," a spokesperson for Twitter said, in a statement released during the protest.

"The account holder was suspended for violating our policies. We apply the Twitter Rules impartially and not based on ideology."

Despite Ms Loomer's apparent anger, her protest, which began at around 3.45 pm local time, ended at 6pm.

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At that point Ms Loomer asked police officers who were present to free her by cutting through the handcuffs.

The 25-year-old previously made headlines after she disrupted Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey's appearance before Congress in September.

As Mr Dorsey prepared to speak, Ms Loomer launched into a tirade against the tech billionaire from the audience.

But she was drowned out by Republican congressman Billy Long, who shouted her down with his auctioneer's patter, to amusement from his fellow politicians.

Ms Loomer has also been embroiled in several other controversies, including an incident last year in which Uber and Lyft banned her after she attacked the companies for a lack of "non-Muslim" drivers.

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