Apple has issued a statement about its move to stop sales through its online storefront in Russia, joining a growing number of companies pulling out of the country.
Amidst Russia's ongoing invasion of Ukraine, Apple confirmed that it has shut down its online retail operations in the Russian Federation. Prior to Apple's confirmation, Russian media outlets and locals in the country reported the halt of 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 pulled Russian news outlets RT News and Sputnik News from its App Store, and has disabled traffic reporting incidents in Ukraine.
Apple issued a statement confirming the news, stating that it is "deeply concerned about the Russian invasion of Ukraine and stand with all of the people who are suffering as a result of the violence."
Earlier on Tuesday, The Moscow Times, an independent Russia media outlet, reported that Apple has "temporarily suspended sales through their official Russian websites."
The reports were corroborated by Kevin Rothrock, an editor at Russia-focused, Latvia-based newspaper Meduza.
Apple has suspended all sales through its official online store in Russia. For any purchases, the delivery date now shows "currently unavailable." I guess people returning from the West can always bring new iPhones with them on the pla— OH WAIT https://t.co/br8qj90L8G— Kevin Rothrock (@KevinRothrock) March 1, 2022
According to anecdotal user reports, delivery dates on Apple's online storefront in Russia now say that all products are "currently unavailable."
Economic sanctions on Russian financial systems and banks have also snarled systems like Apple Pay and Google Pay in Russia.
Apple's has also issued a statement about Tuesday's moves.
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. We are supporting humanitarian efforts, providing aid for 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 paused all product sales in Russia. Last week, we stopped all exports into our sales channel in the country. Apple Pay and other services have been limited. RT News and Sputnik News are no longer available for download from the App Store outside 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 evaluate the situation and are in communication with the relevant governments on the actions we are taking. We join all those around the world who are calling for peace.
Apple's actions come a few days after Ukrainian Vice Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov penned a letter asking Apple to stop supply Russia with new products and services.
It also follows a slew of sanctions levied on Russia by the U.S. and other countries around the world. Some of the U.S. sanctions prevented domestic companies from exporting specific products to the country, though Apple didn't stop sales at the time of their implementation.