Belfast Telegraph

Derry councillor hits out at Facebook 'censorship' after profile deleted - twice

Republican councillor Gary Donnelly.
Republican councillor Gary Donnelly.

A dissident republican councillor in Londonderry has hit out at social media giant Facebook after they twice deleted his profile.

Gary Donnelly is currently an independent member of Derry City and Strabane District Council.

The former republican prisoner first came to prominence as a member of the 32 County Sovereignty Movement and is a former spokesman for the group.

He told the Derry Journal that the issue was affecting his constituency work and said it was an attempt to "disrupt my political activism".

“For the second time in two weeks Facebook have decided to close down my account without any explanation or reason,” Donnelly said.

“I can only assume this is an attempt to censor me and disrupt my political activism.

“Social media is an important tool particularly for elected representatives to contact and liaise with the public and as a result I have lost contact with a number of people who I have been dealing with in the course of my work as an elected representative.

“This blatant attempt by Facebook to censor me will not work and will be seen for what it is."

Facebook has yet to comment on their decision to close his account.

In the recent local council elections Donnelly topped the poll in the Moor Ward for the second time.

He lives in the Creggan area of Derry and was on the scene when journalist Lyra McKee was murdered by the New IRA in April.

Despite his links to dissident republicanism, Donnelly said that the murder of McKee was "wrong" and called on the New IRA to stop all attacks.

"I would plead with those behind this attack to desist from any further attacks and seriously consider the consequences of their actions,” he said at the time.

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