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Russia censures EU’s sanctions extension

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Moscow: Moscow considered the European Union’s decision to extend sanctions against Russia, over its role in the Ukrainian crisis, “unfounded and illegal”, and will respond in kind, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said on Monday.

“Russia, naturally, considers these sanctions to be unfounded and illegal, and we have never been the instigators of sanction measures,” Peskov told reporters.

Moscow will act accordingly, he added, referring to the extension of the measures banning imports of European perishables.

“We reiterate, the reciprocity principle is the basis of our approach in the exchange of sanctions,” Peskov added.

The imposition of sanctions from Brussels on Russia “does not only prejudice the interests of economic activity participants in our country but also the interests of these countries, that is, interests of taxpayers of the European states”, the spokesperson said.

European Union foreign ministers agreed on Monday to officially extend the economic sanctions imposed on Russia due to its role in the eastern Ukrainian conflict until January 31, 2016, contingent upon full implementation of the Minsk peace agreement.

The foreign ministers of the 28 EU countries approved the measure at Monday’s meeting without discussion, as it had been agreed on previously on the ambassadorial level. (IANS)

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Social Media Giants Facebook, Twitter Face Action From Russia Over Legal Violations

After no responses, the agency said that "Roskomnadzor begins administrative proceedings against both companies", reported The Wall Street Journal

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This photo shows a Facebook app icon on a smartphone in New York. VOA

Accusing Facebook and Twitter of defying the law of the land, the Russian government has opened legal proceedings against the social media giants for not complying to local data protection laws.

According to a report in RT.com late Monday, Roskomnadzor, the Russian censorship agency, said that Facebook and Twitter failed to comply with a law requiring all servers that store personal data to be located in the country.

“The tech giants instead handed ‘formal answers’ to the authorities’ previous inquiries. The agency also pledged to take legal action against the internet companies,” said the report.

Russian privacy laws require foreign online service providers to store users’ personal data on servers located within the country.

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Twitter on a smartphone device. Pixabay

“Facebook and Twitter are reportedly negotiating the issue with Russian authorities, as the companies have not yet moved their servers to Russia,” added the report.

Roskomnadzor sent letters to Facebook and Twitter on December 17, giving them 30 days to provide “a legally valid response”.

Also Read- The Great U.S. Government Shutdown

After no responses, the agency said that “Roskomnadzor begins administrative proceedings against both companies”, reported The Wall Street Journal. (IANS)