Reports: Russian authorities make deal with Google

Google HQ, Photo Date: 2/29/2016 / Photo: Ben Nuttall / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0 / (MGN)
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MOSCOW (AP) — Russian news reports say that Google has agreed with national authorities to delete links to websites banned in Russia.

The daily Vedomosti reported Thursday that Google has reached an agreement with the Russian state media oversight agency, Roskomnadzor, to regularly receive updated lists of banned sites and delete links to them upon review. The newspaper says Google has already removed about 70 percent of the banned websites from its search results.

The RIA Novosti news agency quoted Roskomnadzor as saying it has established a "constructive dialogue" with Google.

Last December, Roskomnadzor fined Google 500,000 rubles ($7,600) for failing to delete links to the banned sites. It threatened to cut access to Google if it fails to comply with the demand.

"We're committed to enabling access to information for the benefit of our users in Russia and around the world," Google spokesman Nu Wexler said. The company offered no further official comment.