Intel has halted all business activities in Russia, a month after ceasing supplies to clients in Russia and Belarus. “Intel continues to condemn Russia’s war against Ukraine and calls for a fast return to peace,” the firm said in a statement, adding that it will assist its 1,200 workers in Russia and “take] business continuity measures to minimize interruption to our worldwide operations.”
Apple, which ceased product sales following the Ukraine incursion, AMD, Adobe, and General Electric are among the other IT giants that have taken action in Russia. Meanwhile, Spotify has ceased services in Russia, along with CNN, ABC, and the BBC, in reaction to a new law that severely restricts free expression.
Reporter Vadim Smyslov explored the impact of the war on Russia’s IT employees in a new article for TechCrunch, with many opting to flee the country once the war was declared, and others unable to receive payments after Russia was severed by SWIFT in early March. Others who crossed the Russian border said they were stopped and interrogated. A note from Amazon appeared in the inbox of Vladimir Smirnov, a programmer from St. Petersburg, on the evening of February 23, only hours before Vladimir Putin’s troops entered into Ukrainian territory.
It was a work permit for an employment as a software engineer in Ireland. Smirnov had started interviewing for the job at Amazon in January, when US intelligence raised worries about Putin’s preparations for a conflict in Ukraine. Smirnov realized that conflict was on the way two days earlier, during Putin’s televised speech to the country, in which he acknowledged the independence of the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics, Ukrainian areas that have been under Russian influence since 2014.
“He handed the nation his judgement and, inadvertently, declared war,” Smirnov added. “That terrible words made my entire family shudder.” Knowing that war has been declared is one thing. It’s one thing to wake up on February 24 to learn that bombings have occurred. Smirnov had no doubt that he needed to depart Russia the next morning. After getting ready, he proceeded to take a COVID-19 test so that he could fly to Georgia as quickly as possible, and then to Ireland.