Apple CEO Tim Cook on February 25 expressed concern about the ongoing crisis in Ukraine and called for peace in the country a day after it was invaded by Russia. He said that the US tech major is taking all possible measures to help team members in Ukraine and will also be supporting local humanitarian efforts.
Cook is one of the first tech moguls to openly pledge support to Ukraine.
He wrote on Twitter: “I am deeply concerned with the situation in Ukraine. We’re doing all we can for our teams there and will be supporting local humanitarian efforts. I am thinking of the people who are right now in harm’s way and joining all those calling for peace.”
According to Apple Insider, Apple does not operate any retail location in Ukraine, but the tech giant does work with authorised resellers in the country. Further, according to the Kyiv Post, last year Apple had registered an LLC in Kyiv, Ukraine's capital.
Apple also has a corporate office in Moscow, which was opened earlier this month.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian presidential advisor Mykhailo Podolyak has said that Ukraine wants peace and is ready for talks with Russia, including on neutral status with regard to NATO.
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“If talks are possible, they should be held. If in Moscow they say they want to hold talks, including on neutral status, we are not afraid of this. We can talk about that as well. Our readiness for dialogue is part of our persistent pursuit of peace.”
Ukraine currently is not part of NATO or the European Union, though it wants to join both, anathema to its former overlord Moscow.
After pro-democracy protests toppled a Russia-allied Ukrainian president in 2014, Moscow annexed the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea from Kyiv and went on to back rebels fighting government troops in the east of the country.
Seven years later, Russian President Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine from the air, sea, and land on February 24; his troops have now closed in on the capital city of Kyiv. Missiles have pounded the Ukrainian capital with Russian forces pressing their advance. Air raid sirens wailed over the city of three million people on Friday, where some were sheltering in underground metro stations. Ukrainian officials have said that a Russian aircraft had been shot down; it crashed into a building in Kyiv overnight, setting it ablaze and injuring eight people.
Tens of thousands of people have fled as explosions and gunfire rocked major cities. Dozens have been reported killed. Russian troops seized the Chernobyl former nuclear power plant north of Kyiv as they advanced on the city from Belarus.(With inputs from agencies)