Apple stops all online sales in Russia

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Apple released a statement on its decision to halt sales through its online storefront in Russia, joining a growing number of companies pulling out of the country.

Amid Russia’s continued invasion of Ukraine, Apple has confirmed that it has shut down its online retail operations in the Russian Federation. Prior to Apple’s confirmation, Russian media and locals reported the halt in sales.

In addition to ceasing sales on its online storefront, Apple has also stopped exporting its products to other sales channels in Russia. Bloomberg reported tuesday that Apple also removed Russian media outlets RT News and Sputnik News from its App Store, and disabled reporting incidents of traffic in Ukraine.

Apple released a statement confirming the news, saying it is “deeply concerned about the Russian invasion of Ukraine and stands with all those who are suffering because of the violence.”

Earlier Tuesday, Moscow timean independent Russian outlet, reported that Apple had “temporarily suspended sales on its official Russian websites”.

The information was corroborated by Kevin Rothrock, editor of the Latvian-based, Russia-focused newspaper Meduza.

According to anecdotal user reports, delivery dates on Apple’s online storefront in Russia now indicate that all products are “currently unavailable.”

Economic sanctions against Russian financial systems and banks have also hampered systems like Apple Pay and Google Pay in Russia.

Apple also released a statement on Tuesday’s moves.

We are deeply concerned about the Russian invasion of Ukraine and support all people who are suffering because of the violence. We are supporting humanitarian efforts, providing aid to the unfolding refugee crisis and doing all we can to support our teams in the region.

We have taken a number of actions in response to the invasion. We have suspended all product sales in Russia. Last week, we stopped all exports to our in-country sales channel. 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. And we have disabled both traffic and live incidents in Apple Maps in Ukraine as a safety and precautionary measure for Ukrainian citizens. We will continue to assess the situation and are in communication with the governments concerned on the measures we are taking. We join with everyone around the world calling for peace.

Apple’s actions come days after Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov wrote a letter asking Apple to stop supplying Russia with new products and services.

It also follows a series of sanctions imposed on Russia by the United States and other countries around the world. Some of the US sanctions prevented domestic companies from exporting specific products to the country, although Apple did not halt sales when they were implemented.

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David A. Albanese