He went on to explain that, after reviewing "credible information" from users and the Hong Kong Cybersecurity and Technology Crime Bureau, Apple determined that HKmap.live was used "maliciously to target individual officers for violence and to victimize individuals and property where no police are present".
"Apple was wise enough to invest heavily in end-to-end encryption and retaining as little data as possible in response to increasingly invasive governments and police".
In Hong Kong, other US companies have found themselves on the opposite side of the coin.
BuzzFeed News has reported that Eddy Cue, Apple's Senior Vice President of Internet software and services, and Morgan Wandell, its head of worldwide content development, have specifically said that, for their new Apple TV+ service, they don't want any content that would anger China.
Hong Kong has been rocked by several months of protests from anti-government demonstrators.
As the protests in Hong Kong rage on, USA businesses increasingly walk a tightrope with the Chinese market on one side and public opinion elsewhere on the other.
It's widely known that practically all of Apple's iPhones are assembled in China. The article accused the app's anonymous developer of harbouring malicious motives and queried whether Apple was an accomplice of "rioters".
Just recently, it eliminated the emoji of the flag that represents Taiwan, which China doesn't recognize due to a territorial issue.
This act was apparently motivated by China shutting down Apple's iBooks Store and iTunes Movies in 2016.
The Chinese Communist Party's official newspaper on Tuesday called the tracking app "poisonous" and decried what it said was Apple's complicity in helping the Hong Kong protesters.
Only one day after Chinese state media criticized the company for allowing the HKmap app to be in the App Store, the crowdsourcing map application has finally been removed. China has emerged as the company's third-largest market behind the USA and Europe, accounting for 20% of its sales during its past fiscal year.
Riot police patrol near the police station in Tsim Sha Tsui district, in Hong Kong, China October 10, 2019. But it may not have give Apple the real reason. "This app violates our guidelines and local laws, and we have removed it from the App Store", the company said.
Charles Mok, Hong Kong's legislative councillor for information technology, said he was "deeply disappointed" with Apple's decision.
Activision Blizzard banned an e-sports player known as Blitzchung from its Hearthstone card game and took away his winnings after he shouted his support for the Hong Kong protests in a post-match interview on its streaming service.
Cook addressed criticism the firm has received for removing the app stating: "These decisions are never easy, and it is harder still to discuss these topics during moments of furious public debate".
Naturally, the move angered Hong Kong users and democracy activists from all over the world, but Apple CEO Tim Cook has an explanation.
The iPhone maker is not the first Silicon Valley company to confront the acute challenge of operating in mainland China. The NBA's China headache began when Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey tweeted in support of Hong Kong's protestors. After facing intense criticism from the government of China and the cancellations of National Basketball Association games in the country the Rockets apologized.
Tim Cook told Sen.