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EU courts may order Facebook to remove worldwide illegal comments

Courts in the European Union can order Facebook to remove worldwide comments by users of its service that have been declared illegal, the European Union’s highest court ruled on Thursday.

The ruling is connected to a case brought to an Austrian court by Eva Glawisching-Piesczek who demanded the removal of a Facebook post concerning her that the court found insulted and defamed her and which could be seen by any Facebook user.

EU law does not preclude a host provider like Facebook from being ordered to remove identical and, in certain circumstances, equivalent comments previously declared to be illegal,” the European Court of Justice said in a statement.

“In addition, EU law does not preclude such an injunction from producing effects worldwide, within the framework of the relevant international law.”