Google and Apple have removed an app developed by Russian activists supporting jailed Kremlin critic and opposition leader Alexei Navalny from the Russian versions of their app stores, his team said Friday, after Russia accused the American technology companies of election interference.
The tactical voting app allows voters who do not want President Vladamir Putin’s ruling political party, United Russia, to win the election to organize around a single opposition candidate in each of the 225 electoral districts in an effort to boost the number of non-Kremlin-approved politicians in power.
“Removing the Navalny app from stores is a shameful act of political censorship,” said Ivan Zhdanov, a Navalny ally, in a statement on Twitter. “Russia’s authoritarian government and propaganda will be thrilled.”
Apple and Google did not immediately respond to requests for comment.