Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has said Muslims will always be welcome on his social network.His comments follow remarks by US presidential hopeful Donald Trump, who has been widely criticised this week for proposing a block on Muslims entering the US in the wake of the Paris terror attacks and mass shooting in San Bernardino, California.
In a post on his Facebook page, Mr Zuckerberg wrote: “I want to add my voice in support of Muslims in our community and around the world.
“After the Paris attacks and hate this week, I can only imagine the fear Muslims feel that they will be persecuted for the actions of others.
“As a Jew, my parents taught me that we must stand up against attacks on all communities. Even if an attack isn’t against you today, in time attacks on freedom for anyone will hurt everyone.”
He said that Muslims were “always welcome” on Facebook, and said the company would “fight to protect your rights and create a peaceful and safe environment for you”.
Mr Zuckerberg’s wife Priscilla Chan recently gave birth to a baby daughter named Maxima.
He said: “Having a child has given us so much hope, but the hate of some can make it easy to succumb to cynicism. We must not lose hope.”
Billionaire Silicon Valley executives are increasingly politicised, with their money and power granting them regular access to politicians including US president Barack Obama.
Meanwhile the US Senate is considering a law which would force Twitter and Facebook to report suspected terrorist activity on their networks.
The act would oblige social networks to tell law enforcement if they “become aware of terrorist activity”.
But Senator Ron Wyden criticised the idea, saying: “(Facebook) shouldn’t be forced against their will to create a Facebook Bureau of Investigations to police their users’ speech.”