News of the Day: 24 May 2021

RFE/RL: Russia’s communications watchdog, Roskomnadzor, has given Google 24 hours to delete what it said was prohibited content as it faces the possibility of a punitive slowdown measure on it. Google faces a fine of up to 4 million rubles ($54,300) if the company does not respond to Roskomnadzor’s May 24 notifications about the removal of prohibited information within 24 hours, the watchdog was quoted as saying by TASS. Roskomnadzor said that YouTube, which is owned by Google, did not remove about 5,000 “prohibited” videos, out of which some 3,500 incite “extremism.”

The Moscow Times: Russian officials have defended Belarus’ use of a military jet to divert a passenger plane carrying a dissident, an act Western leaders have called “state terrorism” and that may spark tougher sanctions against Minsk. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told journalists that Belarus had treated the incident with an “absolutely reasonable approach.” “A representative of the Belarusian foreign ministry… stressed the readiness of the Belarusian authorities to act on the issue in a transparent manner and to follow all international rules,” Lavrov said during a press conference following a meeting with his Greek counterpart. “I think this is an absolutely reasonable approach.”

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