Watchdog creates mirror websites for banned media in Russia, Cuba, Iran, 8 other countries

Media monitoring group Reporters Without Borders says it is providing access to websites banned in Russia, Iran and nine other countries in a bid to counter government pressure.

The group said Thursday that it created secured mirror sites, or copies of the original sites, and put them on hosting services provided by Amazon, Google and Microsoft. Governments could still block those services, but Paris-based Reporters Without Borders says that could have broad fallout.

Among sites unblocked is, which is critical of the Russian government and was banned a year ago. Also accessible Thursday were Hablemos Press in Cuba and Gooya News in Iran.

Access to two sites in China, The Tibet Post and Mingjing News, remained limited after the launch.