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Twitter reportedly removes pro-Saudi bots after Jamal Khashoggi disappearance

NBC News gave the social network a list of suspected bot accounts.

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Twitter reportedly suspended massive network of bots spreading a pro-Saudi Arabia message.

Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Twitter reportedly suspended a bot network pushing a pro-Saudi Arabia message regarding vanished journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The social network was reportedly alerted to the bots by NBC News, which on Thursday gave them a list of hundreds of accounts that "tweeted and retweeted the same pro-Saudi government tweets" simultaneously. An unidentified Twitter spokesperson told the outlet that the accounts were suspended for violating rules about spam.

Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist, went missing more than two weeks ago after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. The Saudi government denied any knowledge of what happened to him, but President Donald Trump said on Thursday that "it certainly looks" like Khashoggi is dead.

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Research shows that social media bots and trolls are effective in shaping our political views, and Twitter has taken steps to detect and combat these automated accounts in recent months. CEO Jack Dorsey even asked users for ideas on how to fix its service back in March.