Sen. Mike Lee suspended by Twitter; Musk says error

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 30: U.S. Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) asks a question of former FBI Director James Comey at a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 30, 2020 in Washington, DC. Comey was testifying in the committee's probe into the

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, said his personal Twitter account was suspended without explanation Wednesday.

"My personal Twitter account – @BasedMikeLee – has been suspended," Lee tweeted Wednesday afternoon from his congressional account.

"Twitter did not alert me ahead of time, nor have they yet offered an explanation for the suspension. My team and I are seeking answers," he wrote.

Prior to his suspension, Lee tweeted about Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic, and called on Japan to free Navy Lt. Ridge Alkonis, according to internet archives captured by Wayback Machine.

"Zelensky has no right to presume that our sons and daughters will fight his war. Shame on him. We’ve somehow sent the message that we work for him. Shame on us!" the senator tweeted Tuesday.

"To brush off as inconsequential important conversations about the origins of COVID would be beyond insane," Lee wrote in an earlier tweet.


"This is yet another reason why our Status of Forces Agreement with Japan is woefully inadequate to protect U.S. military personnel in Japan. @kishida230, you’ve got seven hours. Hand Lt. Alkonis over to U.S. custody immediately," he wrote in an earlier tweet, tagging Japan Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. "If you don’t hand him over in the next seven hours, a series of conversations will begin tomorrow to inform Americans of how poorly you’re treating our military personnel—not just Ridge Alkonis, but all 55,000 U.S. forces in Japan."

Alkonis was sentenced to three years in prison for causing a deadly car crash in 2021, although many Americans argue his imprisonment is unjust. Lee has floated the possibility of blocking a sale of tomahawk missiles to Japan over the incident.

Republicans immediately alerted Twitter CEO Elon Musk that Lee had been suspended from the social networking site.

The senator's account was reinstated a short time later, again without explanation, Lee said.

"Thanks to all who assisted in operation #Free@basedMikeLee. Still no explanation from @Twitter as to what happened," Lee tweeted.

Musk addressed the situation in a lighthearted tweet about an hour after Lee's reinstatement, saying it was a mistake.

"His personal account (@BasedMikeLee) was incorrectly flagged as impersonation, which is not totally crazy, since it is based," Musk wrote.

Lee's office did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital's request for comment.

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