Apple declared a halt to all product sales in Russia on Tuesday, the latest repercussion of Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.
Russia has been cut off from the rest of the world or has been subjected to punitive sanctions as a result of the widely criticized attack on its neighbor.
“All product sales in Russia have been halted. We halted all exports into our country’s sales channel last week “According to an Apple statement.
Apple also said that Apple Pay and other services will be limited, and that the RT and Sputnik news apps would no longer be available for download outside of Russia.
“We are deeply concerned about the Russian invasion of Ukraine and stand with all of the people who are suffering as a result of the violence,” the statement said.
“We are profoundly worried about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and stand in solidarity with all those who are suffering as a result of the violence,” the statement read.
“We are supporting humanitarian operations and giving assistance for the escalating refugee situation,” the statement continued.
Ukraine’s defiant government, which has urged its citizens to fight Russian invaders, has sought assistance from everyone, including Apple CEO Tim Cook.
“I request that you cease providing Apple services and products to the Russian Federation, including restricting access to the Apple Store!” Mykhailo Fedorov, Ukraine’s digital minister, wrote in a letter published on Twitter on Friday.
Apple has also blocked traffic and “live occurrences” in Apple Maps in Ukraine as a precautionary measure for Ukrainian citizens.
“We’ll keep assessing the situation and keeping in touch with relevant governments about the steps we’re taking. We join all those asking for peace around the world “According to Apple’s statement.
The news came as the European Union barred Russian news organisations RT and Sputnik from broadcasting in the union, as well as “some” Russian banks from using the SWIFT bank messaging system.
Facebook, TikTok, and Microsoft were among the first to take steps to limit the reach of Russian state-linked news outlets, which are accused of spreading false information about Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.
Social media platforms have become one of the fronts in the attack, providing a forum for sometimes incorrect narratives as well as real-time monitoring of a fight that has marked Europe’s worst geopolitical crisis in decades.
Facebook’s parent company, Meta, announced on Monday that RT and Sputnik will be restricted in the European Union.
TikTok said AFP it has limited Russian state-owned media access to its platform in the EU, while Microsoft said it was deleting RT from its app store and changing its search engine Bing’s algorithm to push RT and Sputnik content to the bottom of search results.
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, access to Twitter and Facebook has been restricted, making them “essentially unusable,” according to web monitoring firm NetBlocks.