Scotland’s first minister fired back at the tech mogul – saying Mr Musk should “tackle racism and hatred that goes unchecked” on his platform.
Mr Musk, who took over Twitter last year before renaming it as X, responded to an account which posted a speech Mr Yousaf made while he was justice secretary in the wake of the murder of George Floyd.
In response to the post, made by an account named “End Wokeness”, Mr Musk wrote: “What a blatant racist!”
In the emotional speech in 2020, the now first minister recited the final words of Mr Floyd before his death in the US while being restrained by police officer Derek Chauvin.
Mr Yousaf went on to highlight that the people he dealt with on a daily basis were all white. Reciting the names of the heads of the legal profession, the courts and the police in Scotland, he punctuated them with the word “white”.
Mr Yousaf moved on to the medical profession, trade unions and directors general of the Scottish government. He concluded by saying: “That is not good enough.”
As of Friday morning, the Musk post accusing him of being a “blatant racist” had been seen by more than 500,000 accounts.
In a cryptic post on the platform early on Friday, Mr Yousaf uploaded a gif of Still Game character Navid dancing to depict his feelings, alongside the comment: “Racists foaming at the mouth at my very existence.”
A spokesman for Mr Yousaf said: “The first minister has been on the receiving end of racist hate, abuse and death threats his entire life, and has stood firm against hatred and bigotry, of any kind, throughout.
They added: “Sadly, much of the racist abuse and threats of violence the first minister faces are directed his way on X – formerly known as Twitter.”
“Mr Musk should use his position to tackle racism and hatred that goes unchecked on the social media platform he owns.”
The original post which Mr Musk replied to was made by a prominent right-wing account which has 1.5 million followers and said: “Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf openly despises white people.”
Racists foaming at the mouth at my very existence.
— Humza Yousaf (@HumzaYousaf) October 27, 2023
The row comes as Mr Yousaf revealed that he has been unable to contact his wife’s mother and her husband after communications were cut off as bombing of the Gaza Strip intensified.
Elizabeth El-Nakla and her husband Maged travelled to the region before the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7 and have been trapped since Israel’s retaliation.
The SNP leader wrote on X: “Gaza is under intense bombing. Telecommunications have been cut off. We can’t get through to our family who have been trapped in this war zone for almost three weeks.
“We can only pray they survive the night. How many more children have to die before the world says enough?”
Mr Yousaf’s remarks come just hours after it emerged he had written to every political leader in the UK to urge them to back a ceasefire in Gaza.