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Twitter restricts Donald Trump Jr.’s account over viral hydroxychloroquine video

Twitter restricted Donald Trump Jr.’s account on Tuesday after he posted a viral video that contained misinformation about the drug hydroxychloroquine and the coronavirus.

Trump Jr. tweeted the video Monday evening and it has since been removed from his account. A Twitter spokesperson told Digital Trends the tweet went against the platform’s COVID-19 misinformation policy.

Twitter required Trump Jr.’s tweet containing the video to be deleted and is limiting some of his account functionality, such as liking or retweeting other posts, for 12 hours.

Donald Trump Jr. speaks at a rally
Drew Angerer / Getty Images

President Donald Trump also tweeted the video to his account Monday night in a retweet that said: “Covid has cure. America wake up,” according to NBC News. That tweet has also been taken down by Twitter.

The video in question was live-streamed by right-wing news outlet Breitbart on Monday. In it, doctors from an organization called America’s Frontline Doctors talk about how masks are not needed and how hydroxychloroquine is the “cure” for the coronavirus.

Twitter’s COVID-19 misinformation policy states that they require to users to remove tweets if they include, “Description of alleged cures for COVID-19, which are not immediately harmful but are known to be ineffective, are not applicable to the COVID-19 context, or are being shared with the intent to mislead others.”

Hydroxychloroquine was initially promoted through social media and by President Trump as a potential cure for the coronavirus. The Food and Drug Administration warned that the drug could cause “serious heart-related adverse events and death” in some patients, especially if used outside of a hospital setting without doctor supervision.

Other government agencies have followed suit in backing off of using hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its information page about the drugs and removed its recommendation for dosage, citing a lack of scientific evidence.

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