According to The Moscow Times, YouTube is taking down content that features the Wagner Mercenary Group.
The Moscow Times’ Russian service is reporting Tuesday that YouTube has begun removing videos about Russia’s Wagner mercenary group, with the the Google-owned video platform explaining in a statement its policies prohibit videos about “criminal and terrorist organizations”.
“We make exceptions only for educational, documentary, artistic and scientific videos if they’re accompanied by suitable context and their publication is justified,” it added. The Times of London newspaper this week reported the UK is preparing to designate Wagner a global terror organization.
The United States has yet to do so, but is debating it along with other Western allies. The US move could be announced in conjunction with Britain taking action. Starting in January, the US Treasury labeled the group which was founded by personal friend of Putin Yevgeny Prigozhin a “Transnational Criminal Organization”.
The government of Ukraine has previously complained that major media platforms like YouTube and TikTok have acted as “effective advertising platforms” for Wagner. But minister Oleksandr Tkachenko has since praised YouTube its decision to move against Wagner-related content with “lightning speed” – particularly channels with over 1 million views.
Subscribe to GreatGameIndia
There are around 50,000 Wagner Group fighters currently deployed to Ukraine. The US has designated the Wagner group as a “transnational criminal organization” while citing ties with North Korea.