Russia adds Meta to list of ‘terrorist and extremist’ groups
Russia had banned Facebook and Instagram in March after accusing their parent company of tolerating ‘Russophobia’.
Russia’s financial monitoring agency, Rosfinmonitoring, has added US tech giant Meta Platforms Inc, the parent company of Instagram and Facebook, to its list of “terrorists and extremists”, the Interfax news agency has reported.
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 March 10 that the platforms would allow statements like “death to Russian invaders” but not credible threats against civilians. It then said 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 using VPNs to keep using the social media networks.
Instagram is particularly popular in Russia and is an important platform for advertisement and sales.
The decision on Tuesday puts Meta on the same list as right-wing nationalist groups; foreign “terrorist organisations”, including the Taliban; and Russian opposition groups.