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Ukraine Invasion: Facebook Access Restricted by Russia

During the invasion of Ukraine, Russia has restricted access to Facebook due to the platform’s stance on the accounts of several Moscow-backed news outlets. Roskomnadzor, Russia’s communications regulator, accused the network of “censorship” and violating “Russian citizens’ rights and freedoms.”

Facebook stated that it would not stop fact-checking and labelling content from state-owned news outlets. The announcement came just one day after Russia launched its attack on Ukraine. It’s unclear what the regulator restrictions mean or how much Facebook parent company Meta’s other platforms – WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram – are affected. The regulator had demanded that Facebook remove the restrictions it imposed on state news agency RIA, state TV channel Zvezda, and pro-Kremlin news sites Lenta.Ru and Gazeta.Ru on 24th February.

Many state-owned Russian media outlets have painted a largely positive picture of Russia’s military advances in Ukraine, describing the invasion as a “special military operation” forced on Moscow. On 24th February, Meta announced the establishment of a “special operations centre” to monitor content related to the Ukrainian conflict.

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