Sunday, November 27, 2022

Apple removes Russian VK, Mail.ru apps from App Store

by The Kyiv Independent news deskSeptember 28, 2022 3:15 pm
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Apple removes Russian VK, Mail.ru apps from App StoreAn illuminated VK logo inside the VK Company Ltd. office in Moscow on Jan. 19, 2022. (Andrey Rudkov / Bloomberg via Getty Images)

As of Sept. 28, Russia's popular homegrown social network VK (formerly VKontakte) and email service Mail.ru are no longer available for download on the App Store in any country.

In a statement, Apple cited conflicts with British sanctions as the reason for the removal. Apps that are already downloaded can continue to be used, according to Apple.

In response, Russia's Digital Affairs Ministry said it was "investigating the reasons" for the removal.

The VK apps are still available on Google’s Play Store.

Apple stopped selling its products in Russia when the full-scale invasion was launched in February 2022, but Russians are still able to purchase them through unlicensed importers. VK, Mail.ru, Yandex, and many websites with the .ru domain have been banned in Ukraine since 2017.

The Kyiv Independent news desk
The Kyiv Independent news desk

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