Russian Federation blocks China's social media app WeChat

China s Tencent deeply sorry for Russia We Chat block

Other social media apps, including Blackberry Messenger, Imo and Line, have also run into similar restrictions in Russian Federation.

China's instant messaging app WeChat is seen on a phone in Moscow, Russia, May 6, 2017.

Tencent was aware of the move and communicating with Russian authorities over the matter, according to a brief statement from the Shenzhen-based company.

"We're experiencing a block and we're deeply sorry", a company official said on a Tencent microblog.

However, Chinese state news agency Xinhua quoted a spokesman for Russia's telecommunication watchdog as saying WeChat "did not provide the contact information necessary for registration with authorities".

Internet-based companies which have links in Russian Federation are required to register with the government.

The South China Morning Post said the app was blocked following Article 15.4 of the law on information, information technologies, and information security, according to Roskomnadzor.

A spokesman for Russia's telecoms watchdog Roskomnadzor said the messaging service "did not provide its contact information for the register of information distribution organisations".

Earlier a similarly worded reason was named when Zello, Line and Blackberry messengers got blocked in Russian Federation.

According to a recent report from Slate, Russia is trying to imitate China's approach on internet control after the web fanned its largest anti-government protests in five years.

It is owned by China's IT giant Tencent.

Social media applications such as Facebook and Twitter are also prohibited in China.

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