Because "hunters on the oligarchs", Russian Federation may block YouTube

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YouTube and Instagram did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Instagram and YouTube may be blocked in Russian Federation unless they remove videos allegedly showing the Deputy Prime Minister meeting an oligarch with links to Donald Trump's presidential campaign on a luxury yacht.

If neither Mr Navalny nor the USA tech firms involved delete or otherwise block local access to the imagery by the end of the day, then Russia's ISPs will be required to take action themselves.

Navalny's LiveJournal blog was blocked in March 2014 along with a number of opposition news websites after demonstrations in Moscow against Russia's annexation of the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine. "Since not all internet service providers in Russian Federation are able to cut access to individual web pages, they may be forced to block YouTube and Instagram if the companies fail to comply with the Roskomnadzor order".

Putin's arch-foe, opposition leader Alexey Navalny, posted a half-hour video last week purportedly showing Kremlin-linked oligarch Oleg Deripaska - a billionaire, who also has ties to US President Donald Trump's ex-campaign manager, Paul Manafort - hanging out on a yacht off the coast of Norway with Prikhodko along with a woman described by Navalny as coming from "an escort service".

Navalny has suggested that he is being targeted due to his calls to boycott the 2018 presidential election, which he calls rigged for Putin. He alleges a corruption conviction against him was fabricated to keep him out of the running.

The relevant information has already been deleted from Instagram accounts.

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Soon after, Deripaska hit Navalny with a court order for the removal of 14 Instagram posts and seven YouTube videos.

Russia's governmental internet watchdog, Roskomnadzor, issued both platforms a notice, giving them three business days to remove the content.

Mr Navalny alleged that providing the yacht trip was a bribe.

Google subsequently wrote to Mr Navalny's team saying it might be forced to block the videos. It also demanded that YouTube remove the Navalny clip.

Navalny says Rybka - whose real name is Anastasiya Vashukevich, according to the Guardian - claimed in a book she published to have met Deripaska and other oligarchs while working as an escort.

"In recent years, Russian authorities have stepped-up measures aimed at bringing the internet under greater state control", said Tanya Lokshina from Human Rights Watch.

In spite of the refusal of big foreign internet companies to share data with the Russian Federation authorities, the FSB says it now has a method to collect encryption keys to spy on users' data, including means to decode to information from Facebook, WhatsApp and Telegram.

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