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Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on April 1. Photo: Alexei Druzhinin\TASS via Getty Images

A Russian court on Friday found Twitter guilty of three counts of violating regulations on restricting unlawful content and fined the company 8.9 million rubles (about $117,000) for not removing posts that encouraged minors to take part in unauthorized protests, according to AP.

Why it matters: The fine comes amid a broad crackdown on the social media company in the country. In March, Russian authorities threatened to ban the platform entirely if the company did not remove some 3,000 posts containing content the government had deemed illegal.

  • Twitter did not immediately comment on Friday's ruling in Russia.

Context: Twitter and other U.S. social media companies are spaces for freedom of expression in Russia and have long provided a forum for political dissent inside the country.

  • Russia's telecommunications regulator, Roskomnadzor, slowed load times to Twitter in March because it claimed the company did not remove tweets that contained illegal drug use or child pornography or "content [that] incites minors to commit suicide."
  • Twitter said in response that it has a zero-tolerance policy regarding child sexual exploitation and illegal activities, like selling or buying drugs.

The big picture: Twitter and other social media platforms have been used to organize large protests in multiple cities across Russia over the detention of opposition leader Alexey Navalny.

  • The Russian government in recent years has limited its internet connection to the rest of the world in order to wrest more control over the country's domestic internet.

Go deeper

Apr 2, 2021 - World

Biden holds first call with Ukraine's Zelensky as Russia tensions escalate

Photo: Sergii Kharchenko/NurPhoto via Getty Images

President Biden spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Friday for the first time since taking office, as U.S. and NATO officials warn of a Russian military buildup near eastern Ukraine that could ignite the long-simmering conflict, according to the White House.

Why it matters: It took more than two months for Biden to speak directly with the president of Ukraine, a key frontline partner in eastern Europe that has been pleading for more help from the West in its fight against Russian aggression.

Toyota to build $1.3 billion U.S. battery plant in North Carolina

The all-electric Toyota bZ4X, the company's first battery-electric vehicle, at the Los Angeles Auto Show in Los Angeles, California on Nov. 17. Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

Toyota announced Monday it's investing $1.3 billion to construct an electric vehicle battery "megasite" near Greensboro, North Carolina, set to open in 2025.

Why it matters: Toyota's Prius hybrid won environmental plaudits when it launched in 1997, but it has since lost ground to electric vehicle world leader Tesla, per Axios' Joann Muller. This battery plant will be the first to produce automotive batteries for Toyota in North America.

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Congress hunts for shortcut to pass defense funding, debt limit combo

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer returned to his office Monday. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

The scramble in Congress to pass the National Defense Authorization Act is being complicated by an effort to tie it to a needed hike in the federal debt limit.

Why it matters: The House and Senate are rapidly coming up against a series of deadlines they must address before the end of the year — or risk disrupting crucial military funding and upending the economy. Congressional leaders are now hoping they can knock out both "must-pass" priorities in one, complex swoop.