Ukraine denounces Apple for calling Crimea part of Russia in apps


Ukraine said on Wednesday Apple did not “give a damn” about its pain, after the U.S. tech giant began referring to the Russian-annexed Crimean peninsula as part of Russia in its Maps and Weather apps for Russian users.

Russia and Ukraine have both been highly sensitive to the way global companies identify Crimea, since Russian troops seized the territory and Moscow annexed it after a referendum that Kiev and its Western allies say was illegal.

Apple appeared to have changed the way it displays locations in Crimea in its software, in a nod to Russian politicians who have demanded the peninsula be referred to as part of Russia.

“Let me explain in your terms, Apple,” Ukraine’s foreign minister, Vadym Prystaiko, wrote on Twitter in English. “Imagine you’re crying out that your design and ideas, years of work and piece of your heart are stolen by your worst enemy, but then somebody ignorant doesn’t give a damn about your pain. That’s how it feels when you call Crimea a Russian land.”

MacDailyNews Take: Yes, this can of worms is still open.


  1. Why all the theatrics. All they would need to do is ask for a correction or something to that effect. Stop with the “Apple doesn’t care about our pain” crap. Mistakes are made all the time and that has nothing to do whether someone cares or not. It’s like someone’s name not being pronounced correctly. You tell the person that’s not the right way to pronounce it and you tell them the way it should be pronounced. That’s the proper way to do things. Don’t start crying that no one gives a damn about your name and how you are completely insulted. Jeez.

    If a person is ignorant that just means they’re not informed and not that they don’t care. I didn’t know squat about Crimea or who it belongs to. Now I know. However, over the course of history, borders are always in a constant flux. I suppose there’s always some beef by some faction about who the land actually belongs to. I’m sure Native Americans in the U.S. must feel plenty of pain about the white man coming from Europe and stealing their land but it’s too late to do anything about it.

    1. BS. This is exactly the problem with Social Justice Warriors like Tim Cook.

      Russia invaded Ukraine. Took land. There is a bloody history if Russia killing Ukrainians.

      To make glib and insensitive comments about this is stupid. Apple/Tim are hypocrites. Only care about what makes them money.

    2. I can’t believe I’ve stooped to responding in an online comments section, but here goes….

      Do you people not read the news? The Russian invasion of Crimea was the first time any country changed borders by force since WWII….and it plays a role in the current political mess in the US, and what that dipshit Trump is being impeached over.

      1. Grandpa always said “The Good Lord only made so many Perfect People, and that wasn’t enough to fill every job at Apple.”

        Fortunately iOS is a powerful system, and able to accommodate being In Russia in Odd-Numbered days and in Ukraine on Even-Numbered Days.

  2. Crimea was part of Russia in the Soviet Union era and was “given” to Ukraine, part of the Soviet Union in that time also. So crimeans decided by overwhelming majority to return to Russia. Russia did not invade Ukraine. They accepted the will of the referendum of people in Crimea, most of them russians.

    1. Any time there is a “free referendum” AFTER THE INVASION HAS ALREADY TAKEN PLACE, it’s invalid. It always has been – especially with Russians – and it always will be.

      If there’s an invader holding a gun to your head telling you to vote “yes” on them staying there – with the implied threat of the gun – which way are YOU going to vote?

    2. I posted an explanation on the first MDN Russia//Ukraine story as to why the claim that Crimea is historically part of Russia is no more than Russian propaganda. Crimea was independent from the 13th Century until 1785. It then became a part of the Russian Empire and was ruled in a mostly Ukrainian governate until 1921. Crimea was only a part of the Russian Federated Soviet Republic, as an Autonomous Republic in its own right, for 33 years, after which it returned to being governed as part of Ukraine for the next 60 years until the invasion.

      You may not give a damn about Crimea or Ukraine, but their native population decidedly does care. They are reacting much as you would if Apple Maps showed your state as being part of Mexico. Apple is between a rock and a hard place, and has chosen to issue pro-Ukrainian maps for Ukraine, pro-Russian maps for Russia, and unlabeled maps for everywhere else.

    3. Russia strongly encouraged the movement into and settlement by ethnic Russians into all of the countries they annexed in forming the Soviet Union.

      Over time, the parts of at least most of those countries bordering Russia and some key cities essentially became “Russified” in language, customs, and political loyalties. Also, this was generally hardly a welcome (or equitable) development in those countries by the indigenous populations, and has remained a sore spot following the breakup of the Soviet Union. This is acutely so in the Baltic countries and Ukraine for example.

      This does much to explains why the war in Ukraine began and remains in the east of the country which was the most Russified.

      Heavy-handed Russian-centric policies have also played by far the greatest roll in the current Crimean situation. This small but strategic area looms large in Russia’s thinking about expanding its power in the world and it sensed it could do so through aggression without much of a response from the rest of the world, and so far it has been proven mostly right, though punishing economic sanctions were imposed because of it.

      Getting recognition of this move and achieving an imposed peace in eastern Ukraine would result in the lifting of some of the US economic sanctions, and this along with vindicating itself by removing being blamed for its clear interference in the US 2016 elections would remove most of the rest. Hence Russia’s interest in shifting the blame to Ukraine via empty conspiracy theories.

      There is no valid understanding of current events in this region without taking these factors into account.

      And I’ll stay away from their connections to political developments in the US here, but there are literally thousands of dots to connect for those who see clearly.

    1. so what maps are you using?

      “This means that Apple has joined Google, Yandex and some other technology companies in redrawing Ukraine’s borders to satisfy Moscow’s territorial claims, at least for customers viewing their maps on devices inside Russia. “

    2. So you’d go to war? Exactly what would you do? There is no outcome of a war between the US and Russia that results in anything except a world in far worse condition. But if so, I’m with ya. Task those carrier groups and satellites, target those military installations, Russia here we come! Yeeee haw!

      First the crazy liberals were screaming about Trump having his finger in the button, now he can’t go to war fast enough to satisfy them. Loving every minute of their exposure.

      1. Hilarious how you set up your own outrageous strawman argument (that SunbeamRapier wanted to go to war, when he implied no such thing), then pretend to be all outraged at your fake “liberals” supporting your silly strawman.

  3. Where exactly do people think Apple do business ?

    Certainly Apple shouldn’t sell stuff in the USA as:

    “From 1778 to 1871, the United States government entered into more than 500 treaties with the Native American tribes; all of these treaties have since been violated in some way or outright broken by the US government, while at least one treaty was violated or broken by Native American tribes”

    i.e Basically the WHOLE of the USA was stolen from the Red Indians . (shoot they even stole their names, as they aren’t ‘indians’ at all ).

    In CANADA when recently they celebrated their 150 anniversary of Confederation (forming of Canada) , the red Indians called First Nations there held days of MOURNING as that was the end of their lands.

    And AUSTRALIA with it’s Aboriginals….

    Apple shouldn’t do business from a MORAL point of view either in USA as:

    The USA invaded Iraq on the pretext of WMD. None of the 911 terrorists were Iraqis, not one. Yet a few months after 911 the USA invaded Iraq (and did nothing to Saudi Arabia where most the terrorists including Osama bin Laden and the funding came from).

    USA’s invasion sparked a giant war WHICH CONTINUES TODAY, spilling over to many nearby countries including Syria resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands and millions of refugees.


    (CNN november : “Baghdad (CNN)At least 319 people have been killed in Iraq since the start of anti-government protests in October, according to the Iraqi Parliamentary Human Rights Committee.”)
    Deaths have climbed since that report to nearly 400 now.

    (no space to even talk about the Drone Strikes, USA toppling South American governments, assassinating elected officials, or rigging elections as found out by UN in Afghanistan… )

    As for the argument about who owns Crimea , note that Hong Kong was for thousands of years part of China and forcibly annexed by Britain during the Opium War (where Britain’s East India company and others forced China to allow foreign traders to ship drugs into China against Chinese Law).

    Yet now when China wants to exert it’s rights in Hong Kong…. world condemns..

    Many of the Hong Kong protestors are TARGETING mainland Chinese civilians , attacking them and burning their shops . (I personally got photos from Hong Kong visiting friends of McDonalds burnt down by protestors.This is one of there reasons Apple stopped the tracking Police App ). One politician who espoused Mainland support views was stabbed. Another supporter was set on fire. (on the other side Mainland politicians and businesses have been nasty to locals for years… )

    (Look I personally Believe in Democracy and Freedom, just playing the devils advocate here. And showing the slippery slopes Apple needs to navigate)

    as the E.U sponsors Libyans to intercept African refugees heading to E.U and place them illegally into concentration camps where they are routinely tortured and raped.

    The Guardian :
    “The EU has admitted in a leaked report that it cannot monitor the Libyan coastguard and that the detention of migrants is a “profitable business model” for Libya’s government, with whom it has recently renewed a controversial deal to stem migration to Europe….

    Widespread human rights violations, deaths, unexplained disappearances, bribery and corruption are cited in the 13-page paper, which still praises the “progress achieved” in reducing the numbers leaving the Libyan coast for Europe.

    Under a recently renewed multimillion-euro deal, the EU and Italy provide the Libyan coastguard with cash, training and boats to intercept migrants in the Mediterranean, as part of an attempt to block people from European shores.”

    The Guardian

    “According to the Women’s Refugee Commission’s report, sexual violence is perpetrated for a number of reasons. As well as being used for blackmail, the attacks are also carried out for the entertainment of security guards, and to punish and kill people who are considered worthless. “If a man tries to escape, all other men are forced to rape him. People are regularly punished, forced into submission and controlled,” said Chynoweth.”

    etc.etc etc. etc

    I am NOT saying any of this is GOOD, most of it is appalling . I am saying NOBODY, not the USA, not the EU, not even pacifist Canada is entirely ‘clean’.


      1. did you actually read my post:

        Protestors are targeting shops (owned by mainlanders), throwing fire bombs and attacking people who support the mainland. Many of those businesses are legal. People have beaten up, stabbed and set on fire.

        So Apple should help them do that? What if a businessman complains that Apple helped protestors destroy his shop?
        (Like i said I’m not saying the Hong Kong protestors don’t have legitimate grievances but Apple is on a slippery slope. And I believe in Democracy. Go read Tim Cook’s statement on Hong Kong )

      1. not sure what your post means:

        sarcasm because you want to defend Europe from my comment on E.U funded camps in Africa where several hundred thousand refugees are being kept illegally and abused TODAY?

        making a sarcastic comment about Neanderthals is supposed to cover that ?

        it’s supposed to make light of things like :


        “”I was locked in a small room with 50 other women and just a bucket for a toilet.
        “We barely ate and there wasn’t enough water. So many people were sick with TB, some died in my arms. I was beaten up and we were tortured – with electricity,” she told the BBC”
        (her husband giving up hope set himself fire ).
        “”They work together with the EU to ensure that the migration problem is not coming to Europe,” a humanitarian worker said.”

        If you are making fun of all that, what does that make you ?

        (My post is that the world is in a big mess, and near everybody is guilty of something. Condemning Apple over this and that is often hypocrisy and near pointless.

        Too many people think too much of themselves and their holiness and like to point the finger at others without realizing their own groups or countries are often just as guilty

        people not understanding my point go read my long post )

        1. all those down voters just proved my point.

          All those comments in days past about China Human rights etc, how evil the Chinese are yet people retaliate back with down votes when the SAME judgement is pointed at them (members of the EU, USA, etc ). I’m NOT even holding them to a HIGHER standard…
          (Near 400 protestors killed in Iraq, One in Hong Kong… )

          One more time if people think apple should get out of China, russia etc then why using the same criteria of judgement why people don’t ask Apple to get out of Europe, USA, etc (look at my long post)

          Like I said cue the Hypocrisy.

          People down vote but don’t dare to debate it out as they know I’m just telling the truth.

          With the down votes I think the world is even more morally BANKRUPT and bias than I thought it was.

          Me I think more like Tim Cook, most countries including USA has bad and good points and it is better to engage than aimlessly sprout and wave your arms.

          Like in China Cook has involved Apple in green energy which is being picked up by other China companies, and changed chinese labour conditions etc. That’s better than ‘get the hell out’ because of their form of government or whatever. Like I said show me a perfectly ‘clean’ country…

    1. Are you referring to me?

      l’m not russian but north American

      as for being a troll, go point out where my facts are wrong

      Like I said i’m playing devils advocate, my point is if people apply the SAME moral rules to condemn Apple for doing business in certain areas and following local laws than Apple basically can’t do business anywhere including the EU and USA Because as I’ve shown clearly nobody is totally ‘clean’.

      For example I’ve read countless comments here on MDN condemning Apple for doing business in China bringing up the Uighur muslim issue . but China treatment of the Uighur is nothing compared to the twenty year war USA and friends have waged against muslims in Iraq etc on the pretext of WMD (no WMD was ever found) . Iraq didn’t take part in 9/11 or attack the U.S. China actions didn’t result to hundreds of thousands dead, more maimed, millions of refugees etc. If i apply Apples China critics arguments to USA in Iraq (the conflict is still going on, near 400 Iraqi protestors killed recently vs one in Hong Kong) then Apple certainly shouldn’t do business in the USA.

      Go ahead debate me on which facts I’ve quoted is wrong

      People can make sarcastic comments, down vote etc but they can’t debate me

      1. You dwell on hypocrisy, especially when contrasted to our own behavior. I agree. These are political world events between governments and their people, not corporations and their shareholders. Citizens United be damned, shareholders are not “people” individuals are. And we live in a Democracy, not a Corporatocracy. A countries sovereignty is not a corporate matter, but for too many it’s always “whatever is good for Apple”.

        Talk about hypocrisy!

          1. you say “A countries sovereignty is not a corporate matter”

            so you are saying Apple should follow whatever mainland China decides for Hong Kong? Since China has strongest claim of sovereignty on Hong Kong.

            HK was part of China for thousands of years. As i explained it was annexed by force by the British when they won the Opium War (The British declared war to force China to allow their traders to import opium which was against Chines law. Hong Kong was part of the spoils of an immoral war). Britain handed it back to China a few decades ago.

            (note instead of handing over Britain fought tooth and nail against Argentina over the Falklands in the 1980s so obviously even Britain thinks Hong Kong is rightly part of China as unlike Falklands they didn’t contest the HK handover. note also Britain did not give british citizenship to most Hong Kong chinese saying they were not British citizens but Chinese )

            so again you’re saying you totally support mainland China s claim on Hong Kong and think apple should stay the heck out of it and follow China’s lead on the protest issue ( you said :A countries sovereignty is not a corporate matter”)

            ok Glad you clarified your stand!

            1. me unlike Applecynics belief in China’s total right over Hong Kong and that Apple should not interfere, Applecynic said “A countries sovereignty is not a corporate matter” i believe Hong Kong residents would be better served with some forms of freedom and democracy

              Still I understand Apples stand in removing the police tracking app as protesters were using it to target people and businesses which were sympathetic to the mainland (see my photos above). It was a safety issue

            2. I’m pretty arrogant, I pale in comparison to you. Putting words in my mouth the way you do.

              Though we probably agree, Hong Kong is not Apple’s matter to solve. It is a geopolitical matter to be solved by sovereign nations, not by corporations.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.