Telegram administrators did not provide the Russian authorities with encryption keys and shemale telegram to their resources, but they cooperate on specific requests in the fight against extremism and terrorism, a source in the Russian government told Interfax.
“Providing Telegram with encryption keys has become irrelevant due to technical reasons. However, the messenger interacts with specific cases in the fight against terrorism,” he said.
According to him, “sovereign Runet” will provide additional opportunities in terms of combating terrorist and extremist manifestations.
Telegram in Russia has been unsuccessfully trying to block since April 2018 by the decision of the Tagansky court. The court made this decision due to the company’s refusal to transfer the keys to the FSB to decrypt messages from users suspected of involvement in terrorist organizations.
On June 18, 2020, Roskomnadzor unexpectedly announced that, in agreement with the Prosecutor General’s Office, it was removing the requirement to block the messenger. The department explained that they reacted to the readiness of the founder of the service, Pavel Durov, to fight terrorism and extremism.
On June 4, Durov announced that he supports the initiative of the deputies from Fair Russia to unblock Telegram. He noted that the company has effectively learned to fight terrorism in six years without violating the users’ rights to privacy of correspondence. Unlocking the messenger, he said, would contribute to the development of innovative and national security in Russia.
On June 15, State Duma deputies Fedot Tumusov and Dmitry Ionin introduced a bill to the chamber, essentially providing for the unblocking of Telegram. They suggested adding the messenger to the list of resources in which important information is published in an emergency situation, as well as official information about government agencies.