EU Tracking ‘Spread of Disinformation’ on Slovak PM’s Shooting

(Bloomberg) -- The European Commission said it’s “actively monitoring” the spread of fake news about Wednesday’s shooting Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico and warned it can slap Big Tech platforms with fines for failing to tackle disinformation.

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The regulator “is equipped with wide-ranging investigatory and supervisory powers, including the power to impose sanctions and remedies,” it said in an emailed statement.

Violations could be punished under the European Union’s tough new Digital Services Act, which forces online platforms to put into place measures to tackle illegal content and disinformation, uphold user rights, and protect user’s health and wellbeing.

Read More: Slovak Premier Fico in Serious Condition Day After Shooting

Fico was being treated in intensive care in a “very serious” but stable condition a day after he was shot in what the government called a politically motivated assassination attempt.

Under the Digital Services Act, the bloc has singled out multiple online platforms and search engines last year as large entities worthy of scrutiny. That includes X, Meta Platforms Inc., Alphabet Inc. and others with more than 45 million monthly active users in Europe.

Russian state media has claimed that the political motivation behind the shooting was Fico’s criticism of pro-Ukrainian aid.

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