Russia Adds Meta to List of “Terrorists and Extremists” Organizations

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Russia’s financial watchdog added Facebook owner Meta to the list of “terrorists and extremists” according to the report by Interfax. The move comes several months after a court in Moscow labeled Meta Platforms an “extremist organization,” banning the company’s social media platforms including Facebook and Instagram.

Russia’s Financial Regulator Blacklists Meta and a Local Democratic Youth Movement

The Federal Financial Monitoring Service of Russia, Rosfinmonitoring, included Meta Platforms in its list of terrorist and extremist organizations, as per the latest report by the Russian news agency Interfax.

The move follows a decision by the Tverskoy Court in March 2022 to accuse Meta Platforms of “extremist activity.” Meta submitted an appeal in June, declining claims that it was carrying out extremist activity in Russia, but it was rejected by the Moscow court.

The court’s decision in March resulted in the ban of Meta’s social media platforms Instagram and Meta. However, the court did not prohibit the use of Meta’s messaging service WhatsApp as it doesn’t publicly disclose information as opposed to the other two platforms.

Meta has been now added to the same list as the Vesna movement, a liberal liberal democratic youth movement based in Saint Petersburg. In September 2022, the city prosecutor’s office of St. Petersburg asked the Moscow court to recognize Vesna as an extremist organization and ban its activities in the country. Russian law demands from local banks to freeze the funds of individuals and organizations included in the list as well as stop providing services to them.

Meta’s Woes Continue to Accumulate

The move by Rosfinmonitoring represents another major blow for Meta this year. The tech giant announced last week it was freezing hiring as a part of its plan to cut costs amid the ongoing market downturn.

Meta’s stock is down more than 60% year-to-date as investors steer clear of tech stocks and other risk assets like crypto amid rampant inflation and high-interest rates. META currently trades at $133.8 per share, while Bitcoin and Ethereum plummeted over 50% in the past six months.

Meta’s stock took another beating Friday ahead of the company’s annual metaverse event, where CEO Mark Zuckerberg is set to unveil the company’s new virtual reality (VR) headset. But Friday’s decline in shares also may be in part due to reports that the majority of Meta staff still don’t completely understand the company’s metaverse strategy.

This article originally appeared on The Tokenist

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