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Instagram reinstates Robert Kennedy Jr amid presidential bid launch

Instagram reinstates Robert Kennedy Jr amid presidential bid launch
Attorney Robert F. Kennedy Jr speaks to a crowd of supporters outside New York State Supreme Court after a hearing challenging the constitutionality of the NY State Legislature's repeal of the religious exemption to vaccination in Albany, New York, US on Aug 14, 2019.
PHOTO: Reuters

WASHINGTON - Meta Platform's Instagram on Sunday (June 4) lifted its suspension against the account of Mr Robert F. Kennedy Jr, nephew of the late president John F. Kennedy, The Washington Post reported.

Mr Kennedy, who is making a long shot bid to challenge US President Joe Biden for the Democratic nomination, was removed from the photo-sharing platform in 2021 for reportedly sharing debunked claims about Covid-19 in violation of its policies on the pandemic.

"As he is now an active candidate for president of the United States, we have restored access to Robert F. Kennedy Jr's Instagram account," Meta spokesman Andy Stone said in a statement, according to the newspaper.

On Thursday, Mr Kennedy in a series of tweets said that Instagram had still not reinstated his account and that "to silence a major political candidate is profoundly undemocratic".

In 2019, Mr Kennedy's relatives, including Ms Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, Mr Joseph P. Kennedy II, and Ms Maeve Kennedy McKean, wrote a Politico op-ed, criticising his previous statements on vaccines as "misinformation".

In September 2021, Alphabet's YouTube also banned channels associated with him and another prominent anti-vaccine activist, Mr Joseph Mercola.

Meta did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment. 

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