Russia Blocks Navalny's Website After Billionaire Graft Probe

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Instagram and YouTube may be blocked in Russian Federation unless they remove videos allegedly showing the Deputy Prime Minister meeting an oligarch with links to Donald Trump's presidential campaign on a luxury yacht.

"It's impossible for internet providers to block certain pages on Instagram and YouTube", and they'll have to block the services unless the material singled out by the watchdog is deleted, said Karen Kazaryan, chief analyst at the Russian Association for Electronic Communications, an internet lobby group.

If neither Mr Navalny nor the U.S. tech firms involved delete or otherwise block local access to the imagery by the end of the day, then Russia's ISPs will be required to take action themselves.

He said the posts showed metals magnate Oleg Deripaska on a yacht with a Russian deputy prime minister, Sergey Prikhodko, and a woman who has described herself as an escort.

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Deripaska also has past ties to President Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort, now indicted by the special counsel investigating alleged Russian interference in the 2016 us election campaign.

Navalny, a vocal foe of Putin who has organized large street protests on several occasions and published a series of reports alleging corruption in Russia's ruling elite, has been barred from the presidential race due to a conviction on financial-crimes charges he contends were fabricated by the Kremlin to sideline him.

Internet service providers in Russian Federation have begun blocking access to opposition politician Aleksei Navalny's website following an order from the country's communications regulator, according to news reports and social-media posts by Navalny and others. "It still opens via some providers, but that is temporary", Navalny tweeted on Thursday.

Both men denied wrongdoing. YouTube has yet to decide how to respond to the legal notice.

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Alexey Navalny, the key opposition figure in Russian Federation, said today that his site Navalny.com has been blocked in Russian Federation.

Instagram photos were also among those that the watchdog wanted to block, though Rybka, whose pseudonym means "fish", appears to have deleted the original images of Deripaska from her account. He concluded that Deripaska and Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Prikhodko had spent time on the businessman's yacht in Norway, which could be suspicious given the anti-corruption legislation.

Roskomnadzor blacklisted the posts after Deripaska filed a lawsuit, prompting a court injunction demanding their removal, according to The Moscow Times.

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. To limit access to services have been given until Wednesday night, February 14.

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