Russia adds Meta to ‘terrorist and extremist’ groups list

Russia adds Meta to 'terrorist and extremist' groups list
This file photo taken on Oct 28, 2021, shows the Meta logo on a laptop screen in Moscow. (File photo: AFP/Kirill Kudryavtsev)

MOSCOW: Russia on Tuesday (Oct 11) added United States tech giant Meta, the parent company of Instagram and Facebook, to a list of “terrorist and extremist” organisations, according to a database of the Federal Service for Financial Monitoring (Rosfinmonitoring).Russia in late March banned Facebook and Instagram for “carrying out extremist activities” after authorities accused Meta of tolerating “Russophobia” during Russia’s military campaign in Ukraine.

Meta had announced on Mar 10 that the platforms would allow statements like “death to Russian invaders” but not credible threats against civilians, before saying that the change only applied to users posting from inside Ukraine.

Facebook and Instagram have been inaccessible in Russia since March, but many Russians resorted to virtual private networks (VPNs) to keep using the social media platforms.

Instagram is particularly popular in Russia, and used to be a key platform for advertising and sales.

Billions of people use Meta’s app around the world.

This decision puts Meta on the same list as right-wing nationalist groups, foreign terrorist organisations including the Taliban and Russian opposition groups.

Source: AFP/kg