Major U.S.-based crypto exchange Kraken plans to distribute $10 million worth of Bitcoin BTC/USD to Ukraine-based clients impacted by the Russian invasion.
What Happened: Kraken said Wednesday that clients who created an account from Ukraine prior to March 9, would be eligible to receive as much as $1,000 in Bitcoin BTC/USD each. Users would be able to immediately withdraw these funds from the exchange and any currency conversion fees would also be waived.
“We hope to continue being able to provide critical financial services in a time of need to both our clients in Ukraine and in Russia,” said Jesse Powell, CEO of Kraken.
“Cryptocurrency remains an important humanitarian tool, especially at a time when many around the world can no longer rely on traditional banks and custodians.”
Kraken also plans to donate the equivalent amount of the total trading fees paid by Russia-based clients in the first half of 2022 to the aid package.
The cryptocurrency drop will take place in three tranches – Tranche 1 will take place on March 10, Tranche 2 on April 1 and Tranche 3 on dates yet to be decided, in Q2. Kraken intends to run its cryptocurrency aid distribution until July 1.
Last month, CEO Jesse Powell explained that Kraken would not block its Russian users from trading despite an appeal for cryptocurrency exchanges to do so from Ukrainian Vice Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov.
Powell reasoned that if Kraken was going to voluntarily freeze financial accounts of residents of countries unjustly attacking and provoking violence around the world, then “step 1 would be to freeze all US accounts.”
Price Action: At press time, Bitcoin was trading at $40,700, down 1.61% in the last 24 hours.
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