July 26 (UPI) -- Forty-nine websites connected with Russian government critic Alexei Navalny were blocked by Russian Internet watchdog Roskomnadzor, officials announced Monday.
Navalny, who has railed against President Vladimir Putin and the Russian government for high-level corruption, was jailed earlier this year for a parole violation. He was poisoned last summer and spent time recovering in Germany.
The websites Roskomnadzor blocked include Navalny's personal website on which he had posted allegations against Putin. The agency last week also blocked the website of a legal group that represented Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation, banning it as "extremist."
Pixabay, the stock-photo sharing website was also banned.
"According to the regulator, access to the site has been restricted based on Article 15.3 of the federal law on information, information technologies, and information protection, which regulates the restrictions on accessing sites containing calls for mass disorder, extremist activity, participation in mass (public) events conducted in violation of the established order," a statement posted on the state-run news agency Tass said.
Leonid Volkov, an ally of Navalny, said the website of attorney Lyuboy Sobol, a supporter of the dissident, was blocked as well. A website connected with Navalny's regional network was also blocked.
Roskomnadzor said Russia's prosecutor general ordered the restriction of the websites on June 15.