By Julia Love
(Reuters) – Apple Inc is stepping up aid to the thousands of migrants that are streaming into Europe from war-torn countries, Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook told employees in an internal message on Friday.
Cook wrote in a message on the company's intranet site that the Macbook & iPhone maker will make a â€œsubstantial donationâ€ to relief agencies supporting the migrants & will match employee donations to the cause by 2-to-1.
The Cupertino, California-based company is moreover offering customers the option to donate to the Red Cross through its App Store & iTunes Store.
â€œApple is dedicated to advancing human rights around the world,â€ Cook wrote in the message, seen by Reuters. â€œWe hope the actions weâ€™re taking will assist make the situation less desperate for some, & ease the hardship so many are enduring.â€
An Apple spokesman confirmed the authenticity of the message.
As Europe grapples with its worst migrant crisis since World War II, other Silicon Valley giants have moreover pledged to help.
Earlier this week, Google said it will match the first $5.5 million worth of donations globally until it raises $11 million.
The crisis in Europe has worsened as civilians seek to escape the four-year-old civil war in Syria, in addition to fleeing conflicts in Afghanistan, Yemen, Iraq & Libya.
The International Organization for Migration said on Friday that a record 473,887 refugees & migrants had crossed the Mediterranean to Europe so far in 2015, including at least 182,000 Syrians – almost 40 percent of the total.
(Reporting by Julia Love; Editing by David Gregorio)