chinese drone maker dji halts russia ukraine sales to ensure products not used in combat - Chinese drone maker DJI halts Russia, Ukraine sales 'to ensure products not used in combat'

SHENZHEN (REUTERS) – Drone giant DJI Technology Co said it will temporarily suspend business in Russia and Ukraine to ensure its products are not used in combat, making it the first major Chinese firm to halt sales to Russia since Moscow invaded Ukraine in February.

“DJI is internally reassessing compliance requirements in various jurisdictions,” the privately held company said in a statement late on Tuesday (April 26). “Pending the current review, DJI will temporarily suspend all business activities in Russia and Ukraine.”

Although Western firms have pulled out of Russia in protest, many Chinese companies have stayed there, taking a cue from Beijing’s stance of refraining from criticism of Moscow over the invasion.

On Wednesday a DJI spokesman told Reuters that the suspension of business in Russia and Ukraine was “not to make a statement about any country, but to make a statement about our principles”.

“DJI abhors any use of our drones to cause harm, and we are temporarily suspending sales in these countries in order to help ensure no-one uses our drones in combat.”

Ukrainian officials and citizens have accused DJI, the world’s largest maker of consumer and industrial drones, of leaking data on the Ukrainian military to Russia.

Last month DJI dismissed those accusations as “utterly false”. A German retailer had cited such information as a reason for taking DJI products off shelves.

Russia calls its action in Ukraine a “special operation”.

Although the company had noticed footage online that suggested the Russian military was using its products, a DJI spokesman said last month it had not been able to confirm this and had no control over the use of its products.

“We are engaging with customers, partners and other stakeholders regarding the temporary suspension of business operations in the affected territories,” DJI’s statement on Tuesday added.