Mykhailo Fedorov, vice prime minister and minister of digital transformation of Ukraine, has called on crypto exchanges to freeze the accounts of both Russian and Belarusian users. Fedorov had tweeted asking crypto exchanges to ban Russian accounts on February 27, following several days of intense fighting in Ukraine after Russian forces invaded the country late last week.
Ukraine’s vice prime minister makes a plea to crypto exchanges.
“I’m asking all major crypto exchanges to block addresses of Russian users,” Fedorov tweeted. “It’s crucial to freeze not only the addresses linked to Russian and Belarusian politicians but also to sabotage ordinary users,” he added. Jesse Powell, CEO of Kraken, one of the world’s largest exchanges, today responded that such a move could not be taken “without a legal requirement to do so,” but he added that Russian users should be aware that such an order “could be imminent.”
Fedorov later praised the NFT platform DMarket that froze accounts belonging to customers in Russia and Belarus. DMarket had confirmed this on Twitter a few hours earlier, stating that assets remain in users’ accounts but that their access has been limited.
ECB President urged lawmakers to regulate crypto to prevent Russia from using them to evade sanctions.
As reported earlier, the possibility of Russia using cryptocurrencies to evade economic sanctions led the President of the European Central Bank, Christine Lagarde, to urge lawmakers to approve a regulatory framework on crypto. Lagarde made this call while responding to a question from a reporter on Russia potentially using crypto to evade some of these measures at an informal meeting of economics and finance ministers on Friday. She stated the fact that the ECB would implement any sanction imposed on Russia by the European lawmakers to the latter.