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Ukrainian leader calls on Tim Cook to block Russian users from the App Store

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‘I appeal to you,’ the vice prime minister wrote

Russia Starts Large-Scale Attack On Ukraine Photo by Pierre Crom/Getty Images

In an open letter published Friday afternoon, the Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine, Mykhailo Fedorov, called on Apple to stop supplying products and services to Russian users as a response to the country’s ongoing invasion.

“I appeal to you,” Fedorov wrote in the letter, published through his Twitter account, “to stop supplying Apple services and products to the Russian Federation, including blocking access to App Store!”

“We are sure that such actions will motivate youth and active population of Russia to proactively stop the disgraceful military aggression,” Fedorov continued.

More than 50,000 Russian troops have entered Ukraine, according to Pentagon estimates, and satellite imagery suggests an attack on the capital of Kyiv may be imminent. The site of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster was taken by Russian forces on Thursday, raising concerns about the ongoing management of radioactive materials there. The fighting has already caused tens of thousands of Ukrainians to flee their homes as refugees, according to United Nations estimates.

On Thursday, the White House issued a broad package of sanctions in response to the invasion, including measures that prevent Apple and other US companies from providing services to the Russian military or ministry of defense. But Fedorov’s request goes further, calling on the company to discontinue service to the country at large.

Apple did not respond to a request for comment on the letter.