Major cryptocurrency exchange Kraken will award $1,000 worth of bitcoin to every Ukrainian citizen who has opened an account on the platform by March 10. The initiative is designed to help those in need after Russia launched its “special military operation” in the country.

Kraken’s support for the Ukrainians

The list of companies, places of business, and individuals doing their best to help Ukraine’s well-being during the ongoing war with Russia continues to grow. The latest example came from US-based crypto exchange Kraken.

In a recent announcement, Kraken revealed that it will donate $1,000 worth of bitcoins to Ukrainian users who signed up before March 10. Citizens would be able to withdraw the cryptocurrency immediately as Kraken will additionally distribute $1,000 in Kraken fee credits to ensure that customers can convert at no cost.

Overall, the company said it will give away more than $10 million in digital assets to affected Ukrainian citizens. Kraken hopes this will be seen as a reasonable compromise, as it has previously refused to block its users based in Russia. Jesse Powell, CEO of the platform, commented:

“We look forward to continuing to provide critical financial services in a time of need for both our clients in Ukraine and Russia. Cryptocurrency remains an important humanitarian tool, especially at a time when many people around the world can no longer trust traditional banks and custodians.”

Kraken later explained that the $10 million donation is equal to the total trading fees paid by Russia-based clients for the first few months of 2022. As such, the company will not benefit from its custom, which is another way of showing his disapproval of the military. conflict.

The reaction of the exchanges

Amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the latter’s deputy prime minister, Mykhailo Fedorov, urged major digital asset platforms to block the blockchain addresses of all Russian users.

However, Binance and Kraken did not follow through on that request. The former argued that “cryptocurrencies are meant to provide greater financial freedom,” and such a move could run counter to the industry concept. He also suggested that most of those accounts belong to “innocent” people who have no connection to the war.

Kraken took a similar stance in describing Bitcoin and altcoins as the embodiment of libertarian values. As such, it would be a mistake to freeze the accounts of all Russian clients, Powell said.

Coinbase, on the other hand, blocked 25,000 Russian blockchain addresses connected to people who are allegedly involved in illegal activities.

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