Portugal Colonial - Intel, Airbnb join US tech freeze-out of Russia and Belarus

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Intel, Airbnb join US tech freeze-out of Russia and Belarus
Intel, Airbnb join US tech freeze-out of Russia and Belarus

Intel, Airbnb join US tech freeze-out of Russia and Belarus

Intel and Airbnb announced they were pausing business in Russia and Belarus on Thursday, joining a US tech freeze-out of Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine.

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The United States and European allies have imposed tough sanctions on Russia over the attack, with major corporations across a range of industries following suit by freezing business in the country.

Apple has halted all product sales in Russia and limited the use of Apple Pay, while Facebook, YouTube and Microsoft have moved to curb the reach of Russian state-linked news outlets.

"Intel condemns the invasion of Ukraine by Russia and we have suspended all shipments to customers in both Russia and Belarus," the chipmaker said in a statement.

"Our thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by this war."

Airbnb's co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky, who has added a Ukrainian flag to his Twitter profile, tweeted that the company "is suspending all operations in Russia and Belarus," without giving further details.

The vacation-rentals platform also announced on Monday that it would offer free short-term stays for up to 100,000 people fleeing fighting in Ukraine.

Since the beginning of the Russian offensive, one million refugees have left the Eastern European country, the United Nations said Thursday.

Airbnb's offer echoes aid extended by the firm last August to people escaping Afghanistan after the Taliban took power.

The California-based company has also faced scrutiny over its presence in China in recent weeks.

Research released this month showed Airbnb had hundreds of listings in Xinjiang and Tibet, two regions where China stands accused of widespread human rights abuses.

Airbnb told AFP at the time that it operates "where the US government allows us to" and has a "rigorous process... to help ensure we follow applicable rules."

F.Ferraz--PC