Russian regulators say internet users won’t be able to access Instagram on Monday because it’s being used to “call for violence” against Russian soldiers.
This latest announcement from Moscow aims to further tighten access to foreign social media platforms, having already restricted Twitter and blocked Facebook.
Russia’s communications and media regulator Roskomnadzor said it was restricting access to the hugely popular image and video-sharing platform because it broadcast “calls to commit acts of violence against citizens Russians, including military personnel”.
Russia has also called on the United States to arrest the social media giant for what it describes as its “extremist activities” while calling for a criminal investigation.
In response, Instagram owner Meta said it would let its users in certain countries call for violence against Russian President Vladimir Putin and Russian soldiers.
Meta said it would temporarily allow certain violent posts such as “death to Russian invaders” in Ukraine that generally violate its rules. However, he would not permit calls for violence against Russian civilians.
Meta’s president of global affairs, Nick Clegg, defended what he described as a “temporary decision taken in extraordinary and unprecedented circumstances”.
“I want to be crystal clear: our policies are focused on protecting people’s right to speak as an expression of self-defence in response to a military invasion of their country,” he said. he said in a statement.
“The point is that if we were to apply our standard content policies without any adjustments, we would now remove content from ordinary Ukrainians expressing their resistance and fury against invading military forces, which would rightly be considered unacceptable.”