Ukraine calls for corporate support as Oracle suspends Russian operations

Updated: Mykhailo Fedorov requests the severance of business relationships with Russia. Oracle and SAP have taken this step.

Ukraine's government has called on Oracle and SAP to end business relationships with entities tied to Russia immediately. 

On March 2, Ukraine's Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation, Mykhailo Fedorov, tweeted a copy of letters addressed to Oracle co-founder and CTO Larry Ellison, Oracle CEO Safra Catz, and SAP's chief executive officer Christian Klein. 

The letters are similar in their appeals, and both request an end to business relationships in Russia in response to the current invasion of Ukraine by the country. 

In the letter sent to Oracle's leadership, Fedorov said, "Ukraine is now on the frontline of the defense of the principles of democracy and freedom in the face of the war waged by [the] Russian Federation."

"The IT industry always supports values of responsibility and democracy. I believe your country shares them."

The Ukrainian leader went on to say that Ukraine "calls on your company to end any relationships and stop doing business in/with [the] Russian Federation, in particular, to stop providing support, maintenance, and software updates for Oracle products until the conflict is resolved and fair order is restored." 

In communication with SAP, Fedorov said that "modern technology in 2022 is also the way we can defend our country and citizens, and that's why we need your support."

"We hope that you will not only hear, but also do everything possible to protect Ukraine, Europe, and finally, the whole world from bloody Russian aggression. [...] Thus, I appeal to you to stop providing SAP services and products until Putin's attack on our country [is] over."

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Screenshot via Twitter

Update 17.15 GMT: Oracle has tweeted:

"On behalf of Oracle's 150,000 employees around the world and in support of both the elected government of Ukraine and for the people of Ukraine, Oracle Corporation has already suspended all operations in the Russian Federation."

Fedorov responded, "With gratitude from all the free people of Ukraine!"

The official also published an open letter to game developers on March 2, requesting a temporary block on all Russian and Belarusian account holders, including a temporary ban on their participation in international e-sports events. 

In related news, on Tuesday, Apple said product sales have been paused in Russia, exports to sales channels have been stopped, and the Russian state-controlled RT News and Sputnik News outlet apps have been revoked from the App Store outside of the country. In addition, the iPad and iPhone maker said it "has disabled both traffic and live incidents in Apple Maps in Ukraine as a safety and precautionary measure for Ukrainian citizens." 

Ukraine has also asked for Russia's top-level domains (TLD) to be revoked, alongside their SSL certificates.

Update 8.13 am GMT 3/3: SAP pointed us to a blog post, published on March 2. SAP is also restricting its business in Russia. SAP says: 

"Economic sanctions against Russia are an important mechanism in the efforts to restore peace. We are in constant exchange with governments around the world, have every confidence in their guidance, and fully support the actions taken so far. 

We are stopping business in Russia aligned with sanctions and, in addition, pausing all sales of SAP services and products in Russia."

SAP has allocated €1 million in humanitarian support and are working with agencies including the Red Cross and UNHCR.

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