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Russia to curb Facebook for ‘censorship’

Russia says it is partially limiting access to Meta Platforms Inc’s Facebook, accusing it of “censoring” Russian media, the latest in a series of steps against US social media giants.

Russia has been trying to exert tighter control over the internet and big tech for years, something critics say threatens individual and corporate freedom, and is part of a wider crackdown against outspoken opponents of the Kremlin.

The state communications regulator said that Facebook had ignored its demands to lift restricts on four Russian media outlets on its platform – RIA news agency, the defence ministry’s Zvezda TV and websites gazeta.ru and lenta.ru.

It was not immediately clear what Russia’s restrictions on Facebook would involve.

Last year Russia slowed down the speed of Twitter in a punitive move.

“In accordance with the decision of the General Prosecutor’s Office, starting from February 25, partial access restrictions are being imposed by Roskomnadzor on the Facebook social network,” the regulator Roskomnadzor said in a statement.

Facebook, which had no immediate comment, has already irked Russia’s authorities.

Russia routinely fines the company small sums for what it says is a failure to delete illegal content quickly enough.

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