Ukraine Vice Prime Minister Pleas to Sony, Microsoft and Other Game Companies to Pause Operations in Russia

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Ukraine’s Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation, Mykhailo Fedorov is calling on the game industry, including console platform holders, to temporarily cease business with Russia amid the ongoing Ukraine conflict.

The Ukraine official posted an open letter in a tweet that specifically called out and mentioned PlayStation and Xbox. Fedorov called for the game industry and eSports platforms to “temporarily block all Russian and Belorussian accounts, temporarily stop the participation of Russian and Belorussian teams and gamers in all international esports events, and cancel all international events holding on the territory of Russia and Belarus.”

“The Russian Federation has carried out a deceptive and outrageous military attack on my country. Just imagine, in 2022, cruise missiles attack residential neighbourhoods, kindergartens, and hospitals in the heart of Europe,” Fedorov said in an open letter.

“The armed forces and citizens are defending Ukraine till the end. The whole world is repelling the aggressor through the imposition of sanctions — the enemy must suffer significant losses. But we need your support — in 2022, modern technology is perhaps the best answer to the tanks, multiple rocket launchers and missiles.”

He adds that Russia declared war not just on Ukraine but the whole civilized world and companies that support human values should take a stand against the Russian market. Russia has a population of 140 million, of which an estimated 40 million are reportedly gamers. If the platform holders respond in kind we’ll see if it puts public pressure on the Russian government

The statement follows Apple and Google restricting operations in Russia, which includes limiting or outright blocking services including Apple Maps, Apple Pay and Google Pay. Meanwhile, media companies like Disney, Sony and Warner Bros. are pausing theatrical releases in Russia for some of their upcoming releases like Turning Red, The Batman and Morbius.

The game companies have already responded to Russia’s attack on Ukraine by denouncing the violent attack. This War of Mine developer, 11 bit studios went the extra mile and is donating all This War of Mine proceeds it earned over the last week starting on February 24th to Red Cross Ukraine. In response, GOG’s parent company, CD Projekt is donating its This War of Mine revenue split from this past week and more to the cause.

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