- The Washington Times - Friday, January 22, 2021

Twitter has suspended an account purportedly linked to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that featured an image showing a Donald Trump-like figure on a golf course apparently being targeted by a missile strike, saying it believed the account was a fake.

A Twitter representative told The Washington Times that the account in question violated the site’s “platform manipulation” policy, “specifically the creation of fake accounts.”

The Photoshopped image posted late Thursday depicted a figure in red about to hit a golf ball as an ominous shadow fills the bottom half of the picture.

An accompanying text warned that former President Trump faced payback for his order to target top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani with a deadly missile strike on a visit to Baghdad in early 2020. U.S. officials say Soleimani was responsible for attacks by Iranian forces and their allies against American troops throughout the Middle East over the years.

“Revenge is inevitable,” the tweet warned. “Soleimani’s killer and the man who gave the orders must face vengeance.”

Revenge, the message added, “can take place at any moment.”

The question of the authenticity of the Twitter account came amid growing pressure on Twitter and other social media platforms in recent days to restrict or suspend the Iranian leader’s access, following a number of threatening posts in the past.

The clamor for a suspension grew even louder after Twitter, Facebook and others announced they were blocking Mr. Trump’s accounts over his questioning of the 2020 U.S. presidential election and alleged encouragement of his followers ahead of the violent occupation of the U.S. Capitol Jan. 6.

• Ryan Lovelace can be reached at rlovelace@washingtontimes.com.

• David R. Sands can be reached at dsands@washingtontimes.com.

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