Cryptocurrency platforms reject a request to freeze Russian funds

With the ruble collapsing, investing in cryptocurrencies appears to be an increasingly popular alternative to the Russian currency. • by Alice Zaniolo • March 4, 2022

With the Russian ruble collapsing against the US dollar and the euro, investing in cryptocurrencies appears to be an increasingly popular alternative to the Russian currency. According to a report by CoinShares, cryptocurrency exchanges for rubles have seen volumes increase by 121% in the past week. The largest cryptocurrency exchange platform in the world, Binance, showed record trading volumes in USDT / RUB over the weekend. Rising volumes could likely raise doubts that cryptocurrencies can be used by Russia to circumvent some of the economic sanctions imposed on the country. European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde hinted at this during an informal meeting on Friday, in which responding to a question about Russia might use cryptocurrencies to evade sanctions, she replied that the currently proposed framework for regulating digital assets. in the EU should be pushed through as quickly as possible. Ukraine calls for the blocking of Russian cryptocurrency users On Sunday, Ukraine's Minister of Digital Transformation urged global cryptocurrency platforms to block all accounts belonging to Russian citizens. According to estimates, Russian citizens own around $ 200 billion worth of cryptocurrencies according to numbers as of early February. Binance was the first cryptocurrency exchange to decline the request. The company said it has no intention of unilaterally deleting millions of innocent user accounts. Cryptocurrencies were meant to provide greater financial freedom for people around the world and they certainly won't start undermining that principle. However, they will block the accounts of those on the sanctions list, ensuring that they are fully respected (sanctions). Two other major names in the market, Coinbase Global Inc. and Kraken, also refused the request from Ukraine. Kraken's CEO said on Twitter that the company cannot block Russian customer accounts without a legal obligation. However, cryptocurrencies could soon become a means of circumventing some of the economic sanctions. The platforms could therefore be forced to deviate from some of their fundamental "cryptographic values".

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