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Russia warns Google over protest videos

Police attend an unauthorised rally in Moscow calling for fair elections on Saturday 10 August
TASS / Getty Images
Police attend an unauthorised rally in Moscow calling for fair elections on Saturday 10 August

The Russian government has warned internet giant Google to prevent users from using its video streaming service YouTube to publicise illegal protest events in the run-up to local elections in Moscow.

Roskomnadzor, also known as the Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media, said it was concerned about an advertising tool YouTube uses to promote channels to users.

The government agency said that YouTube was sending out push notifications to users whether or not they were subscribed to a particular channel.

Roskomnadzor said that if Google does not respond to its letter, that "the Russian Federation will regard this as interference in the sovereign affairs of the state, as well as a hostile influence and obstructing the holding of democratic elections in Russia".

The Russian government would then look to take action against Google, it added.

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