MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia will block Twitter in a month unless the US social media giant complies with a request to remove banned content, Russian news agencies quoted a senior regulatory official on Tuesday.
Moscow said last week it had slowed the speed of Twitter within Russia in retaliation for what he described as failing to remove a specific list of banned content.
Twitter he said at the time that he was concerned about the impact on free speech of the Russian action and denied allowing the use of his platform to promote illegal behavior as claimed by the Russian authorities.
In a move that escalates the growing stalemate, Vadim Subbotin, the deputy head of Roskomnadzor, the communications watchdog, was cited Tuesday for saying that Twitter he had not yet addressed Russian concerns and would have been stranded in Russia within a month if he did not.
“Twitter he is not reacting to our requests as they should. If the situation continues, it will be stopped within a month without a court order, ”said Subbotin, the Interfax news agency.
He was quoted for saying this Twitter it could still avoid being blocked if it took steps to eliminate banned content, which Moscow says includes child pornography and material on illegal drugs and child suicide.
Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The US platform was already under pressure in Russia after being named earlier this month as one of five social media platforms sued for failing to delete posts urging children to take part in illegal anti-Kremlin protests.
On Saturday, the Russian Foreign Ministry accused the United States of using IT opportunities to engage in unfair competition and social media platforms that arbitrarily and indiscriminately censor content.
Reportage by Polina Devitt and Alexander Marrow; Editing by Andrew Osborn