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Demand for Telegram’s encryption keys is fair, says leader of Russia’s Liberal Democrats

April 14, 3:26 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Vladimir Zhirinovsky likened the restrictions on information exchanges to traffic rules

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MOSCOW, April 14. /TASS/. Russian Liberal Democratic Party leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky believes that the telecommunications watchdog Roskomnadzor’s demand the management of the massaging service Telegram disclose its encryption keys to Russian law enforces is right and fair.

"The demand for providing the codes necessary for deciphering messages is fair. It is rather a forced measure. Behind it there is no wish to see every single exchange of messages. It is rather bitter medication. Without taking it the patient dies," Zhirinovsky said in his Telegram channel on Saturday. "If today’s communication systems, IT systems are capable of turning the whole world upside down, then restrictions must be imposed, of course. Otherwise we will keep many millions of people in a state of stress."

He likened the restrictions on information exchanges to traffic rules.

"True, sometimes the driver feels the temptation to step on the accelerator pedal to go faster. But there are the speed limits, because high speeds result in accidents more often and cause more casualties. Speed kills thousands of people around the world every day. This explains why it has been agreed to limit it," Zhirinovsky said, adding that information without restrictions was still more dangerous than road traffic.

Moscow’s Tagansky court sustained Roskomnadzor’s lawsuit containing a demand for blocking the messenger Telegram in Russia for its refusal to disclose encryption keys for reading suspicious users’ messages to the federal security service FSB. Roskomnadzor filed the lawsuit on April 6. Telegram said the demand was impossible to comply with technically, because the keys existed on the individual users’ gadgets only. Roskomnadzor chief Aleksandr Zharov told TASS Telegram would be blocked soon.

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