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Sen. Cruz to Twitter: 'The Ayatollah and Any American Companies Providing Him Assistance Are Entirely Subject to U.S. Sanctions Law'

Calls for Twitter to end its services to the Iranian regime

February 7, 2020

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202-228-7561

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, this week sent a letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey calling on the company to end its services to members of the Iranian regime, including the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and the Iranian Foreign Minister, Javad Zarif - both sanctioned by the Trump administration. He was joined by Sens. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.).

In the letter, the Senators wrote:

"The Obama administration [...] created an exception for services and software incident to Internet-based communications including ‘instant messaging, chat and email, social networking,' licensing the Iranian regime to propagandize over American social media platforms such as Twitter. Ironically and infuriatingly, the regime does not allow its own people access to such platforms.

They continued:

"While the First Amendment protects the free speech rights of Americans - and Twitter should not be censoring the political speech of Americans - the Ayatollah enjoys zero protection from the United States Bill of Rights. And, as the leader of the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism - directly responsible for the murder of hundreds of U.S. citizens - the Ayatollah and any American companies providing him assistance are entirely subject to U.S. sanctions laws."

Read the full letter here. A copy of the letter was sent to President Trump, Secretary Mnuchin, Attorney General Barr, and U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California Anderson.

Sen. Cruz has led the fight in the Senate to hold Big Tech accountable to the American people. American companies that have already been given special privileges under U.S. law should not be engaged in political censorship of American citizens while at the same time providing their services to brutal regimes - responsible for the murder of hundreds of Americans. Twitter has decided to ban all political ads from its platform - yet provides the Ayatollah Khamenei and other regime officials with Twitter accounts to spread terror unchecked.

READ MORE: Cruz in The Hill: Mark Zuckerberg is right, Jack Dorsey is wrong

READ MORE: Cruz Chairs Big Tech Censorship Hearing with Representatives from Twitter and Facebook

READ MORE: Cruz: Latest Twitter Bias Underscores Need for Big Tech Transparency

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