Kremlin blocks The Moscow Times' Russian website over war coverage
Russia blocked access to the The Moscow Times' Russian-language service after it published a report on the invasion of Ukraine, the online newspaper said Friday.
Why it matters: The Moscow Times is the latest of many independent media organizations to face backlash after publishing information about the war that runs counter to the Kremlin's claims.
- The Kremlin has been waging a crackdown on freedom of speech, the press and dissent well before it launched its invasion of Ukraine, though it has sharply increased its suppression efforts to maintain control over how the war is perceived by Russians.
- Russia has forced several independent media organizations to suspend their operations, while international companies, including Bloomberg and BBC, have also paused coverage in the country. Many social media platforms have been restricted.
The big picture: The Moscow Times said Roskomnadzor, Russia's communications watchdog, ordered service providers to block the newspapers' Russian-language service over a report on riot police refusing to fight in Ukraine and returning to Russia.
- It reported that least 40 domestic and foreign websites have been blocked by the watchdog since the start of the invasion on Feb. 24.
- The Moscow Times' English-language service is still accessible.