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A popular Facebook group for U.S. truckers planning to protest against vaccine mandates was taken down by the social media platform early Wednesday, leading to accusations of "censorship."
The group, "Convoy to DC 2022" had gained upwards of 137,000 members before it was removed. It was set up to organize a protest similar to the "Freedom Convoy" of thousands of truckers that traveled from Vancouver to Ottawa last week in protest of Canada's vaccine requirements.
Jeremy Johnson, the group's administrator and one of the U.S. protest organizers, told Fox News Wednesday that Facebook's action was "censorship at its finest."
"They like to silence people that speak the truth," Johnson said his group's ban.
A spokesperson for Facebook's parent company, Meta, said in a statement: "We have removed this group for repeatedly violating our policies around QAnon."
Those policies were put in place in October 2020, when Facebook banned all content related to the QAnon conspiracy theory, which the company called a "militarized social movement."
Brian Base, another organizer of the U.S. convoy, disputed Facebook's characterization of the group during an interview on "Fox & Friends."
"I have to laugh about that. Can they contact me or something? Can we talk? That's not true," he said. "They actually had offered the administrators to remove content and then request to review again. They didn’t even give that option.
"They literally wiped Mike Landis and Jeremy completely out of Facebook," he said. "They don’t even have a profile anymore, so how are you supposed to request a review or remove anything?"
Landis, a trucker and fellow convoy organizer, added that a widespread protest against U.S. vaccine mandates is "a long time coming."
"The presence of that amount of people that show that they are unhappy with what’s going on is a good way to hopefully get their attention," he said.
The protest organizers told Fox News they hope a wide range of Americans will come out to support them, just like Canadians cheered for their countrymen that convoyed to Ottawa.
"This crosses all genders, all races, all sexual orientations, all occupations," Brase said. "Truckers might be standing up, but it’s not about the truckers. It’s about America."
They hope that peaceful protests will end COVID-19 vaccine mandates once and for all.
"The government needs to really take a look at what the American people want," Johnson said. "And they don’t want mandates."
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