Meta Removes Controversial Azov Regiment From Ukraine From List Of Dangerous Organizations

Facebook’s parent company Meta has removed the Azov Regiment, a controversial unit within the Ukrainian Defense Forces with far-right political leanings, from its list of dangerous individuals and organizations. movement first reported by Kyiv independence, meaning unit members can now create Facebook and Instagram accounts and post without having Meta automatically flag and remove content. Unaffiliated users can also praise the Azov Regiment for adhering to the company’s community standards.

A company spokesperson said: “The war in Ukraine has meant a change in the situation in many areas and it has become clear that the Azov Regiment does not meet our stringent criteria for designation as a dangerous organization.” Kyiv independence. Meta did not immediately respond to Engadget’s request for comment.

Sharing more information on policy changes, Meta said. Washington Post Recently, we have begun to view the Azov Solidarity as a separate entity from other groups associated with the far-right nationalist Azov movement. Specifically, the company singled out Ukraine’s National Corp political party and founder Andriy Biletsky, pointing out that they are still on the list of dangerous individuals and organizations. “Hate speech, hate symbols, calls for violence and other content that violates our community standards are still prohibited and will be removed if found,” Meta said.

The Azov Regiment was created by Viletsky in 2014 after Russia annexed Crimea and the Donbas War broke out that same year. The unit was controversial for its adherence to neo-Nazi ideologies before being incorporated into the Ukrainian Defense Forces in November 2014. In 2015, a spokesman for the Azov Regiment said that between 10 and 20 percent of the unit’s recruits were self-styled Nazis. At the start of the 2022 conflict, Ukrainian officials claimed the unit had largely been depoliticized, though there were still some extremists in the Azov Regiment. During the months-long siege of Mariupol, the Azov Regiment played an important role in the defense of the city. The Russians captured many of the battalion’s fighters at the end of the battle.

These changes show how much the meta’s content moderation policy has changed since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Since last year, the company has started temporarily allowing those calling for violence against Russian soldiers in Ukraine and a handful of other countries. After the decision sparked controversy, Mehta said it would leave policy guidance to an oversight board, but the company later withdrew the request, citing “ongoing safety and security concerns” related to the war.

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