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Russia’s Group may lose 25 mln Ukrainian users because of Kiev sanctions

Earlier on Tuesday, Kiev banned Russian VKontakte and Odnoklassniki social networks, as well as and Yandex companies

MOSCOW, May 16. /TASS/. Group may lose 25 mln of users in Ukraine because of the sanctions Kiev imposed against the Russian companies in that country, the company said.

"About 25 million Ukrainians communicate with their friends in Ukraine and around the world using the platforms that are being locked, now they will be deprived of these connections," the Group statement said.

Earlier on Tuesday, Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko brought into effect a decision made by the country’s National Security and Defense Council on expanding sanctions on Russia. The sanctions list consists of 1,228 Russian individuals and 468 legal entities. Sanctions have been imposed on several TV channels and companies, including 1C, ABBYY and their Ukrainian subsidiaries. In addition, Russia’s VKontakte and Odnoklassniki social networks, and Yandex companies have been banned.

A representative of VKontakte (a social network, part of the Group) told TASS, that every month 16 million Ukrainian residents visit the website.

"VKontakte is the most popular social network in Ukraine. We believe that the Internet, in essence, has no boundaries. We have protected, and we will protect the interests of all our users," the spokesperson with the company added.