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Barton Leads Twitter Crusade

Joey Barton, who has become a media fixation over the past few days, due to his violent altercation with Arsenal players, Alex Song and Gervinho, at the weekend, has adopted a rather more philanthropic stance on social networking site, Twitter. The 28-year-old has asked his followers to support a petition calling for information related to the Hillsborough Disaster to be made public.

The Hillsborough Disaster, in 1989, ended the lives of 96 Liverpool fans, and injured 766 others, when a ‘human crush’ developed on the terraces at the home of Sheffield Wednesday, Hillsborough. The incident, while widely publicised, even today, has never benefited from the release of official documents pertaining to the accident. “The truth about Hillsborough must come out”, Barton tweeted yesterday. Although many people interested in Premier League betting are not big fans of Barton, the petition will find favour with supporters everywhere.

Barton, has gained some renown on Twitter, for his outlandish statements, which include referring to the United States as a “fascist regime”, insulting Alan Shearer’s dress sense, and asking the “working class” to “unite”, and “take back what is ours”. While many people prefer just to follow the latest football odds, Barton’s Twitter feed has provided fans with a dubious form of entertainment.

Nevertheless, the midfielder has asked his 420,464 followers to sign an e-petition calling for the full disclosure of government literature relating to the Hillsborough accident. The petition has 46,799 signatures, as of 09:20 on Friday, including Piers Morgan and former Newcastle player, Michael Owen. However, Lady Gaga and Alan Sugar, two of the celebrities targeted by Barton, have yet to add their signatures to the e-petition.

Barton’s crusade has been applauded by fans in Liverpool. “Thank you for all you’re doing”, said Graeme Hammond, a Twitter user who lost his brother at Hillsborough, two decades ago.

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