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The US government has backed down under pressure from Twitter and the American Civil Liberties Union, withdrawing a request to unmask the identity of an account critical of President Trump’s immigration policy.
The withdrawal comes just one day after Twitter filed a lawsuit against the US department of homeland security, secretary of homeland security John Kelly and the US customs border protection agency, claiming users were protected under the first amendment.
In a new filing on Friday, Twitter said it was dismissing its previous complaint because the summons from the defendants had been withdrawn.
The defendants had asked the messaging platform to identify who was behind the Twitter account @ALT_USCIS, which is one of many protest accounts styling themselves as ‘alternative agencies’ to comment on announcements made by government departments. It makes it clear it is not expressing the views of either the department of homeland security or the customs agency.
The ACLU had said it would represent the user behind the account and praised Twitter’s decision to go to court to defend the user’s right to anonymous speech.
Neither the department for homeland security nor the customs agency responded to a request for comment.