Russia Blocks Navalny's Website After Billionaire Graft Probe

Instagram has removed Navalny's video.                  Alexei Navalny

As ISPs in Russian Federation cannot censor specific posts, this could result in a total blockage of YouTube and Instagram in the country.

Access to two of the pages leading to Alexey Navalny's investigation on Oleg Deripaska, as well as the video about the investigation, is limited in Russian Federation, as follows from the Roskomnadzor registry.

Footage of the billionaire sailing on a yacht with deputy prime minister Sergei Prikhodko, where it is claimed bribes were exchanged, is now online.

YouTube and Instagram may be blocked in Russian Federation as early as Wednesday unless they comply with the order and remove the material, Vedomosti newspaper reported. At one point in the video clip, the two men discuss Russia-U.S. relations, and seem to blame Victoria Nuland, former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, for the deterioration of those ties.

Prikhodko added that Navlany "confusingly mixed everything possible and impossible - from my friend (Oleg Deripaska) to the American President Trump and Manafort, who I do not know personally".

Navalny said that beyond cavorting with what he said were women in the "escort services industry", Prikhodko was accepting a bribe from the billionaire by traveling on his ship.

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The court's decision on the interim measures was taken on the evening of February 9, so Instagram had three working days under the law, that is, until the evening of February 14, to remove the posts. However, several developments before and after the suit was filed suggest that while Navalny formally is not a defendant in Deripaska's lawsuit, he might very well be the target of it.

The Google-owned video sharing giant has responded by threatening to delete the open source videos and Instagram posts that form the backbone of Navalny's inquiry.

She claimed in a book she wrote that she was hired as an escort on Deripaska's boat, but her allegations weren't taken seriously until Navalny's expose last week, according to The New York Times.

A spokeswoman for Navalny told Fast Company that "YouTube hasn't blocked our video yet", but that it could likely happen this week. Navalny is asking that they do not accede to the government's demands. To limit access to services have been given until Wednesday night, February 14.

Roskomnadzor (Federal Service for Supervision in the Sphere of Telecom, Information Technologies and Mass Communications) is the Russian internet watchdog with close ties to the country's FSB intelligence services.

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