Apple suspends all product sales in Russia
By Brian Fung, CNN Business
Apple has stopped selling all of its products in Russia due to the invasion of Ukraine, the company announced on Tuesday.
The company said in a statement that it was “deeply concerned” about the Russian invasion and in response had “suspended all product sales” in the country. Apple also said it has decided to limit access to digital services, such as Apple Pay, inside Russia, and to restrict the availability of Russian state media apps outside the country.
“Last week, we stopped all exports to our sales channel in the country. Apple Pay and other services have been restricted. RT News and Sputnik News are no longer available for download from the App Store outside of Russia,” Apple said. “And we have disabled both traffic and live incidents in Apple Maps in Ukraine as a safety and precautionary measure for Ukrainian citizens.”
Apple’s move comes as tech companies face mounting public pressure to act against Russia. Ukraine’s government last week asked Apple to stop offering its app store in Russia, but some security and democracy experts said it could hurt Russian users who are protesting the Kremlin and relying on tools Westerners to get organized.
Facebook, YouTube and Twitter all started crack down on content shared by Russian media amid growing pressure from European officials to act against pro-Russian propaganda. Netflix also said it was refuse to broadcast Russian state television channels in the country.
Following Apple’s decision announcement on Tuesday, Ukrainian Minister of Digital Transformation Mykhailo Fedorov tweeted that Apple CEO Tim Cook should “finish the job” and again urged the company to “block” access to its app store in Russia.
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