09:33 GMT24 September 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Apple notified the Rossiya Segodnya international news agency about the demand of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) to remove mobile applications of all brands of the agency from the Ukrainian segment of the AppStore, Rossiya Segodnya press office said.

    Rossiya Segodnya said the letter received from Apple contained "a notification about the removal of the agency's applications from the Ukrainian segment of the AppStore at the request of the SBU."

    Ukraine has banned the broadcasting of dozens of Russian channels since the summer of 2014. The blacklist includes Channel One, Rossiya 24, Zvezda, REN-TV, Life News, RTR-Planeta, RT, as well as many entertainments, children's or sports channels.

    The All-Russia State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company (VGTRK) also said earlier in the day that Apple had removed the applications of the Russia-1 TV channel, Vesti FM radio station and Vesti.ru from AppStore in Ukraine at the request of the SBU.

    According to Anton Gorelkin, a member of the Russian lower house's information policy committee, Apple's actions are meeting the censorship requirements set up by Kiev against Russia.

    "From the Ukrainian authorities' point of view, the removal of Russian broadcasters' apps from the AppStore is just a continuation of censorship bans," Gorelkin said.

    Ukraine has banned the broadcasting of dozens of Russian channels since the summer of 2014. The blacklist includes Channel One, Rossiya 24, Zvezda, REN-TV, Life News, RTR-Planeta, RT, as well as many entertainment, children's or sports channels. In Russia, these restrictions were repeatedly called unacceptable and regarded as an attack on freedom of the media.

    According to Rossiya Segodnya Director General Dmitry Kiselev, the Security Service of Ukraine's (SBU) demand for tech giant Apple to remove Rossiya Segodnya international news agency's applications in Ukraine is censorship.

    "This, unfortunately, is the already usual censorship in the West. They cannot stand freedom of speech anymore. But Russia remains the world champion in freedom of speech. Nowhere else is there such a range of opinions and statements. We are not afraid. We are in balance," Kiselev said.
    Tags:
    Security Service of Ukraine, application, Rossiya Segodnya, Apple, Russia
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