Facebook deleted in North Korea

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Facebook deleted in North Korea

North Korea's presumed Facebook account has been deleted after the global social networking forum reportedly accused it of violating its terms of use.

The account at www.facebook.com/uriminzok had attracted hundreds of "friends," or subscribers, to its posts before it disappeared, a developer confirmed yesterday morning.

A Facebook representative in Seoul said she did not know why the account disappeared. An e-mail seeking comment from the U.S. headquarters for Facebook had yet to be returned.

Bloomberg, quoting Facebook spokesman Kumiko Hidaka, reported Tuesday that the account, rife with propaganda, had been deleted because it violated the site's terms of use.

PC World, a U.S. news outlet on information technology, quoted the same spokesperson in an e-mail last week that a previous version of the page with a slightly different user name "was removed because it violated our terms of use."

PC World suggested that the violation may have to do with a section in the terms that stipulates that entities based in countries embargoed by the United States cannot "operate a Platform application or Web site" on Facebook. North Korea is under U.S. sanctions for its development of weapons of mass destruction.

An online note from the operator of the now-defunct Facebook page has told Yonhap News Agency that a media company under the North's organ on inter-Korean relations was running it from Pyongyang.

An official at a Seoul watchdog organization, the Korea Communications Standards Commission, told Yonhap on Tuesday that the Twitter page can be "seen sufficiently as being run" by the North. But he would not confirm whether it was or not.

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