Russia fines Wikimedia Foundation over Ukraine war entries

(Reuters) -A Russian court on Tuesday fined Wikipedia owner Wikimedia Foundation 2 million roubles ($32,600) over articles relating to the Ukraine war, the head of the foundation’s Russia chapter told Reuters.

Stanislav Kozlovsky said the penalty was imposed for not deleting entries that Russia has demanded be removed. He said the foundation would appeal.

“We still have a fairly strong legal procedural position, so we have reason to believe that we will succeed in having both this fine and those issued in April overturned,” Kozlovsky said, referring to earlier fines totalling 5 million roubles.

The two articles, in Russian, were titled “Non-violent resistance of Ukraine’s civilian population in the course of Russia’s invasion” and “Evaluations of Russia’s 2022 invasion of Ukraine”.

Kozlovsky said there is a risk that the number of cases against the Wikimedia Foundation will increase.

There are many articles on Wikipedia about the Russian invasion of Ukraine and only three court cases so far, he added.

Russia describes its war in Ukraine as a “special military operation”.

(Reporting by Filipp Lebedev; Editing by Mark Trevelyan and David Evans)