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Facebook deletes some content banned in Russia, but still faces hefty fine

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Facebook has complied with Russian demands to delete some banned content, but it could still face a hefty fine as it was slow to do so, the Vedomosti newspaper cited state communications regulator Roskomnadzor as saying on Monday.


Russia has increased pressure on foreign tech firms in recent months as part of a long-running push to assert greater sovereignty over its segment of the internet.

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Roskomnadzor threatened Facebook last week with a fine of up to 10 percent of its annual Russian turnover unless it deleted content that Moscow deems illegal.

Experts cited by Vedomosti estimate Facebook’s Russian turnover at between 12 and 39 billion roubles ($165-$538 million). Reuters could not immediately verify those estimates.

Roskomnadzor said Facebook had taken down banned content from its platform as well as from Instagram, but that it could still face the fine on turnover because it had not deleted the content quickly, the newspaper reported.

Facebook and Roskomnadzor did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Read more: Russia threatens Facebook with fine for blocking certain media outlets