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Elon Musk takes control of Twitter in $44bn deal




The world's richest man, Elon Musk, has completed his $44bn (£38.1bn) takeover of Twitter, according to a filing with the US government.


Mr Musk tweeted "the bird is freed" and later said "let the good times roll".


A number of top executives, including the boss, Parag Agrawal, have reportedly been fired.


Mr Agrawal and two other executives were escorted out of Twitter's San Francisco headquarters on Thursday evening, said Reuters.


The completion of the deal brings to an end months of legal wrangling but it has prompted questions over the platform's future direction.


A filing was made with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday, confirming the takeover.


The New York Stock Exchange said on Friday that trading in Twitter's shares had been suspended, giving the reason as "merger effective".


Twitter co-founder Biz Stone appeared to confirm the executives' departure. In a tweet, he thanked all three for their "collective contribution to Twitter", calling them "massive talents" and "beautiful humans".


Meanwhile, Bret Taylor - who had served as Twitter's chairman since last November - updated his LinkedIn profile to indicate that he was no longer in the post.


Mr Musk, a self-styled "free speech absolutist", has been critical of Twitter's management and its moderation policies.


They clashed over the terms of the takeover, with Mr Musk accusing Twitter of providing misleading information about the firm's user numbers.


He has also said he would reverse bans on suspended users, which could include former US President Donald Trump, who was excluded following the Capitol riot in January 2021.


At the time, Twitter said there was a risk Mr Trump would incite further violence. But Mr Musk has described the ban as "foolish".


Earlier this week, Mr Musk said that he doesn't want the platform to become an echo chamber for hate and division. "Twitter obviously cannot become a free-for-all hell-scape, where anything can be said with no consequences!" he tweeted.

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