Google Blocks Russian State Media from App Store in Europe

Tech giant Google has reportedly blocked Russian state media apps including Russia Today and Sputnik from the Google Play store across Europe.

Reuters reports that Google stated on Tuesday that it has blocked the mobile apps of Rusia Today and Sputnik from its Play Store. The move comes shortly after Google’s decision to remove Russian state media from its news-related features.

This illustration picture shows the US multinational technology and Internet-related services company Google logo on February 14, 2020 in Brussels. (Photo by Kenzo TRIBOUILLARD / AFP) (Photo by KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP via Getty Images)

(Photo by KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP via Getty Images)

Russia's President Vladimir Putin attends a joint press conference with Kazakhstan's President following their talks at the Kremlin in Moscow on February 10, 2022.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin attends a joint press conference with Kazakhstan’s President following their talks at the Kremlin in Moscow on February 10, 2022.

Tech companies across the world have been limiting Russia’s ability to distribute state-approved news and information as the invasion of Ukraine continues. The moves come as the European Commission considers a ban on the state news agencies entirely due to fears that they are spreading misinformation about the war in Ukraine.

Russia Today has pushed back on allegations of promoting misinformation, with RT Deputy Editor-in-Chief Anna Belkina stating that the tech firms that have cut the news outlets’ reach have not provided evidence that they have reported incorrect information.

A number of tech giants have taken action against Russian state media, with multiple platforms banning Russian media across the EU. Facebook (including Instagram), YouTube, and TikTok have completely banned Russian media outlets like Russia Today and Sputnik throughout the European Union.

On Monday, Facebook President of Global Policy Nick Clegg stated that the company had received requests from a “number of governments” as well s the European Union to restrict Russian state media. “Given the exceptional nature of the current situation, we will be restricting access to RT and Sputnik across the EU at this time,” Clegg said.

Google, which has prevented Russian state media from generating revenue on YouTube and Google, announced similar plans stating: “Due to the ongoing war in Ukraine, we’re blocking YouTube channels connected to RT and Sputnik across Europe, effective immediately.” Several days later, the Masters of the Universe took stronger action.

Breitbart News recently reported that Apple has halted the sale of its products in Russia in response to the country’s invasion of Ukraine. Apple does not have any official stores in Russia but ships its products to the country through its online stores and via third-party retail stores in the country.

Apple has taken a strong stance against Russia following the invasion of Ukraine, banning its payment service in the country after the U.S. sanctioned Russian banks and restricting the apps of Russian state media Russia Today and Sputnik. The news apps will only be viewable in Russia, according to a company spokesperson.

Read more at Reuters here.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Lucas Nolan