Thursday, 22 February, 2018

YouTube and Instagram face Russian bans

A video posted by model Nastya Rybka led to a Kremlin opposition investigation into a minister's meeting with an oligarch A video posted by model Nastya Rybka led to a Kremlin opposition investigation into a minister's meeting with an oligarch
Sammy Stanley | 15 February, 2018, 18:09

Russian Federation may block both YouTube and Instagram after videos showing oligarch Oleg Deripaska were uploaded to the social media sites.

Deripaska, who emails show was offered briefings on the Trump campaign by Manafort, went to court only days after the investigation's publication, and a judge agreed with his claim that they violated his privacy.

Alexei Navalny said that Russia's communications regulator barred access to his website because of information he posted about Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska.

Putin's arch-foe, opposition leader Alexey Navalny, posted a half-hour video last week purportedly showing Kremlin-linked oligarch Oleg Deripaska - a billionaire, who also has ties to US President Donald Trump's ex-campaign manager, Paul Manafort - hanging out on a yacht off the coast of Norway with Prikhodko along with a woman described by Navalny as coming from "an escort service". "The site could still be opened through some of the network providers, but it's a matter of time", Navalny wrote on Telegram.

A February 14 deadline that Navalny said was set by Roskomnadzor passed without incident, but reports that navalny.com was inaccessible for many in Russian Federation began flowing in on February 15.

A court has called for activist Alexei Navalny's 25-minute video be blocked. "Roskomnadzor hopes that Google's decision will be positive", Interfax quoted the regulator's press service as saying.

Putin critic Alexei Navalny posted a video on You Tube connecting the meeting to alleged Russian intereference in the 2016 election
Putin critic Alexei Navalny posted a video on You Tube connecting the meeting to alleged Russian intereference in the 2016 election

The material was said to have been sourced from a woman's Instagram account, where it had been posted in 2016.

Navalny's report caused a potentially embarrassing splash ahead of a March 18 election in which Putin, who has been president or prime minister since 1999, appears certain to win a new six-year term but is said to be hoping for a convincing victory that would strengthen his mandate and further cement his power.

In a video that has been viewed more than 4 million times, Navalny claims that the trip constitutes a bribe by Deripaska to the government official.

Mr Navalny also uploaded a photo of the "secret meeting" alongside a post detailing corruption claims, to his own Instagram account.

Navalny's foundation earlier published documents suggesting that Prikhodko, a long-time public servant with no significant private income, owns a luxurious mansion outside Moscow. He tweeted that both sites were up and running in Russian Federation, but could be shut down Wednesday night.

A dispute between one of Russia's richest businessmen and an opposition leader could mean no access to YouTube and Instagram for the country's citizens.

Potter stuns top PGA names to land Pebble Beach victory
NOTES: Hockey legend Wayne Gretzky, Johnson's father-in-law and partner in the pro-am, withdrew on Sunday citing back pain. The left-hander picked up 11 strokes through 15 holes, only to bogey his final two holes for a nine-under 62.

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