Roskomnadzor has blocked the websites of Open Media, MBH Media and Human Rights Protection in Russia.

On the evening of August 4, Roskomnadzor blocked the websites of two publications – Open Media and MBH Media, associated with Mikhail Khodorkovsky. In both cases, they were entered into the register of prohibited information by decision of the Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation. The agency referred to article 15.3 of the law “On information, information technology and information protection”: this article allows you to block sites that contain information calling for riots, extremist activities or participation in illegal mass events.

The publications do not know why they were blocked. Open Media and MBH Media said that neither Roskomnadzor nor the Prosecutor General’s Office notified them of the blocking. Representatives of Open Media said that a couple of hours before the blocking, at 19:03 Moscow time on August 4, they received four letters from Roskomnadzor demanding the removal of illegal information. What information was in question was not specified in the letters. MBH Media noted that they had not received any notifications.

Open Media editor-in-chief Yulia Yarosh noted in an interview with Meduza that usually Roskomnadzor in its warnings indicates the specific address of the material to which there are claims, as well as the period of time for which it must be removed. “This has not happened now,” said Yarosh.

We do not understand the reasons for the blocking. And we don’t know yet what to do about it. We will contact the RKN. But most likely, this is something very serious. Apparently, we are not talking about the fact that we will delete some news and we will be unblocked.

The editor-in-chief of the MBH Media website, Veronika Kutsyllo, told Meduza that two weeks ago, the editorial board received the last official warning from the RKN due to the news for December 2020. “It was about suicide and the warning was related to the description of the method of suicide. We fixed everything, ”said Kutsyllo.

Also in Russia they blocked the website of “Human Rights  Protection of the Postcard” – a human rights project of Mikhail Khodorkovsky. The blocking notice states that access to the site is restricted on the basis of Article 15.3 of the Information Law.

In July, the Russian Ministry of Justice included four journalists from Otkrytye Media in the list of “Media – Foreign Agents”. The   editor-in-chief of the publication Yulia Yarosh , her deputy  Maxim Glikin , journalists  Ilya Rozhdestvensky  and  Alexey Posternak were included in the  register.

(C)MEDUZA 2021

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