Apple on Thursday removed any games, and a number of other apps, that contain images of the Confederate battle flag from the App Store.
“We have removed apps from the App Store that use the Confederate flag in offensive or mean-spirited ways, which is in violation of our guidelines,” a spokesperson said to BuzzFeed News. The company denied issuing a blanket ban however, stating that the flag can be shown for “educational or historical uses.”
While Apple denied there was a blanket ban, the move has forced a number of American Civil War games out of the App Store. Some developers insist the Confederate flag was included only to be historically accurate.
Buzzfeed reports that its sources indicate Apple is working with game developers hit by the ban to return their apps back to the App Store. The Cupertino firm is reportedly asking developers to replace the flag before a game can make its return. Developer HexWar has said it will resubmit its game with a less familiar 1861 version of the flag.
The racially motivated killing of nine people at a South Carolina church last week has led to a widespread campaign to remove the Confederate flag from government buildings and other public spaces. Some retailers, including Walmart, eBay, and Amazon, have announced they will remove merchandise that carries the Confederate battle flag from their stores and websites.