Two of Ukraine's most popular social networking sites, VKontakte and Odnoklassniki, are to be blocked in the country after Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed an order imposing sweeping sanctions on Russia, including the Mail.ru Group which owns the two platforms. 

The controversial order also demands that Ukrainian internet providers block all Yandex services, including its search engine and antivirus programmes DrWeb and Kaspersky Lab.

Yandex, VKontakte and Odnoklassniki are internet leaders in Ukraine in terms of daily audience figures, with the Ukrainian market the second largest after Russia for VKontakte, often dubbed the “Russian Facebook”.

Economic sanctions will also bring asset freezes and broadcast bans against Russian television channels TV Tsentr, RBK, VGTRK, NTV-Plus, Zvezda, TNT, REN and ORT.

The order signed by Mr Poroshenko imposes sanctions for three years with the possibility of extension.


 

Source: Meduza (in Russian)

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