Chechen leader Kadyrov’s account blocked due to US sanctions – Facebook
Facebook said Kadyrov’s account had been deactivated due to “legal obligations,” arising from the new US sanctions against the leader of Russia’s Chechen Republic. Kadyrov was sanctioned under the Magnitsky Act last week alongside four other Russian nationals over alleged human rights abuses.
“We became aware and have now confirmed that the accounts appear to be maintained by or on behalf of parties who appear on the US Specially Designated Nationals List and thus, subject to US trade sanctions. For this reason, Facebook has a legal obligation to disable these accounts,” Facebook said in a statement, as quoted by RIA Novosti.
The Facebook and Instagram accounts of the Chechen leader went down without any explanation on Saturday. Kadyrov responded by registering an account with Chechnya’s own social network Mylistory. “Dear friends, I have created my personal account kadyrov_95 in Mylistory. From now on I will post all important news and photos there,” Kadyrov said on his Telegram channel. The new social network, somewhat similar to Instagram in its features, gained a significant boost in popularity following the announcement.
The Kremlin has expressed concerns over the blocking of Kadyrov’s accounts. Nevertheless, no retaliatory measures have been discussed, Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters. Russian Communications Minister Nikolai Nikiforov slammed the blocking of Kadyrov’s accounts as “a vivid example of double standards.”