MOSCOW: YouTube on Friday blocked a number of channels with hyperlinks to Ukrainian separatists as tensions soar between Moscow and the West over the potential for Russia invading its ex-Soviet neighbour.
The breakaway areas bordering Russia have been locked in an armed battle with the Ukrainian military after Russia seized Crimea in 2014.
A number of channels run by separatist authorities in self-proclaimed Lugansk Folks’s Republic and Donetsk Folks’s Republic have been inaccessible.
The Lugansk Folks’s Republic stated on its official information web site that its channels had been blocked “without explanation”.
The channel of the Lugansk data centre was inaccessible on Friday and a service message stated it “has been terminated for violating YouTube’s community guidelines”.
A number of different separatist channels carried the identical message, together with these belonging to the ministry of knowledge and the “people’s militia” of the Donetsk stronghold.
There was no quick remark from the Silicon Valley large.
Ukraine and its Western allies accuse Russia of supporting the separatists by sending arms and troops throughout the border. Moscow has denied the claims.
In latest months, Western leaders have sounded the alarm over a possible Russian invasion as Moscow has deployed greater than 100,000 troops to the border with Ukraine.
Moscow insists it has no plans to invade Ukraine however has on the identical time laid down a collection of safety calls for — together with a ban on Ukraine becoming a member of NATO — in trade for de-escalation.