Russia extends Twitter slowdown until May in dispute over new law

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April 5 (UPI) — Russian censors on Monday extended an Internet slowdown for Twitter users until at least the middle of May, but held off on banning the platform altogether after it deleted close to 2,000 disputed tweets.

Russian authorities slowed Twitter speeds last month after the company refused to delete certain content banned by a new Russian law against misinformation.

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Moscow said then it would slow down upload and download speeds for Twitter users until the platform complied with the law.

Officials said Monday the slowdown of speeds will last for several more weeks.

The Kremlin had grown angry at Twitter and other platforms, partly because supporters of opposition leader Alexei Navalny used them to organize national protests in January. The law was passed in February.

Twitter said it’s working with Russian communications regulator Roskomnadzor to resolve the dispute.

“We had a constructive conversation with Roskomnadzor on Thursday, where we re-affirmed Twitter’s zero-tolerance policy regarding child sexual exploitation and emphasized that it is against our rules to promote, glorify or encourage suicide and self-harm, and reiterated that we do not allow the use of Twitter for any unlawful behavior or to further illegal activities,” a Twitter spokesperson told The Hill.

“It was a productive discussion about how we can both work to ensure that reports of such illegal content are dealt with expeditiously.”

Last week, a Russian court fined Twitter for failing to delete posts that are outlawed by the new law.