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25 March, Monday

Ufa   °

Court ruled to block Telegram in Russia


UFA, 13 April 2018. /Bashinform News Agency, Galina Bakhshieva/.

The Moscow's Tagansky court ruled to satisfy the Roscomnadzor's lawsuit on blocking Telegram's messenger in Russia, RIA Novosti reported.

Roskomnadzor was allowed to bring this measure into effect immediately. Telegram will be unblocked only if it provides the FSB encryption keys.

Telegram's lawyers did not show up at the session, saying that the messenger founder Pavel Durov had forbidden them "to legitimize an outspoken farce by their presence". They plan to appeal the verdict.

The session itself passed swiftly. The presentation of the evidence took less than half an hour, after which the judge went out to the chambers.

During this time, representatives of Roskomnadzor and the Federal Security Service reported that Telegram's refusal to hand over the keys to encryption to the special services threatened the interests of the state and society and could work in favor of terrorists.

Roskomnadzor filed a lawsuit with a request to block Telegram on April 6. The Office requested that this measure is immediately enforced in case of a positive ruling.

The company's defense claimed that the FSB's requirements were not feasible for technical reasons — because of the messenger architecture. In addition, lawyers insisted on postponing the hearing because of "procedural violations" by the judge.

According to them, the companies were not allowed to familiarize themselves with the suit of Roskomnadzor, depriving them of an opportunity to present objections to it and their evidence. The court rejected this motion.

Durov himself stated that Telegram would not agree to the terms of Roskomnadzor, since the messenger stands for freedom of speech and privacy.

Telegram was already on the verge of blocking at the end of June due to a refusal to provide Roscomnadzor with information for inclusion in the register of information dissemination organizers, but then this did not happen. After a public discussion, he, after all, submitted the company registration data.

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