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Media watchdog demands explanation from Facebook for blocking Russian media outlets

April 06, 13:08 UTC+3 MOSCOW

On April 3, Russia’s Federal News Agency reported that its Facebook and Instagram accounts had been blocked without explanation

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© AP Photo/Noah Berger

MOSCOW, April 6. /TASS/. The Facebook company must clarify its stance on the blocking of several Facebook and Instagram accounts operated by Russian news outlets, Russia’s media watchdog Roskomnadzor said in a statement on Friday.

On April 3, Russia’s Federal News Agency reported that its Facebook and Instagram accounts had been blocked without explanation.

"The blocking may particularly impede activities aimed at informing Russian and foreign users about Russia’s news agenda," the statement reads. "Roskomnadzor believes that this step is another proof of Facebook’s hostile policy towards Russian users," the watchdog added.

In December 2017, Head of Chechnya Ramzan Kadyrov’s Facebook and Instagram accounts were blocked, which prompted the Russian media watchdog to request the Facebook company explain its reasons for that move. Facebook replied that the decision was made based on Kadyrov being included on the US sanctions list.

In February 2018, a Moscow meeting between senior officials from the Russian media watchdog and Facebook representatives touched upon the blocking of Russian users accounts.

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