The Walt Disney Co. has announced it is suspending all business in Russia in response to Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. The decision comes as Disney continues its close relationship with China despite the CCP’s well-established record of invasion and human rights atrocities.
Disney said Thursday it will pause all business operations in Russia in response to the armed conflict. “Given the unrelenting assault on Ukraine and the escalating humanitarian crisis, we are taking steps to pause all other businesses in Russia,” the media giant said in a statement.
Among the operations Disney will halt in Russia are its Disney Cruise Line activities, National Geographic magazine and tours, content and product licensing, local content productions, and linear channels. Disney said some businesses will take some time to stop due to contractual obligations.
The company has already announced it will stop releasing movies in Russian cinemas, a move taken by all the major Hollywood studios.
Disney continues to do business in China despite Beijing’s continued genocide of minorities in Xinjiang and Tibet. The company operates theme parks in Shanghai and Hong Kong, and continues to seek theatrical release dates in Chinese cinemas.
In 1950, China invaded Tibet and forcefully imposed its rule on the Tibetan people. Since then, the CCP has sought to eradicate religious practice in the predominantly Buddhist nation.
At its annual shareholders meeting this week, Disney faced scathing criticism for its continued ties with China and CCP leaders.
Investor activists from the Free Enterprise Project (FEP) — part of the National Legal and Policy Center — blasted Disney leadership for implementing race-based employee training, which the FEP said “gives cover to the CCP and its ongoing human rights atrocities.”
“HR departments are largely responsible for the spread of social justice employee programs, including these Critical Race Theory trainings that abound across corporate campuses as much as they do on college campuses these days. Disney is at the leading edge of this nonsense,” said Justin Danhof, Esq., executive vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research.
Disney’s decision to halt operations in Russia appears to be an attempt to divert attention away from the ongoing controversy surrounding the company’s reaction to Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill.
CEO Bob Chapek initially refused to get Disney involved in the debate surrounding the legislation, which would forbid the teaching of sexuality and transgenderism to kids in kindergarten through third grade. But under pressure from LGBTQ activists and the mainstream news media, Chapek caved and publicly condemned the legislation, which Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) is expected to sign into law.