Kraken to Gift $1,000 in BTC to Users Affected by Russia-Ukraine Crisis

Kraken Jesse Powell

Popular American cryptocurrency exchange Kraken has prepared a $10 million aid package that will be disbursed to its users affected by the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. The distribution of aid will begin on the 10th of March and run until July 1st, 2022..

Eligible Customers to Receive $1K Worth of Bitcoin

Per Wednesday’s announcement from the exchange, users who created an account with the exchange from Ukraine prior to March 9, 2022 will be qualified to receive $1,000 in bitcoin. The beneficiaries can choose to immediately withdraw it in fiat from the exchange upon receival.

Kraken also noted that it will not charge its clients the usual fees for converting BTC to dollars. Conversion of $1,000 and less will be free for the time being.  The exchange further noted that it would donate an amount equivalent to the total trading fees paid by Russia-based clients in the first half of 2022 to the aid package.

Commenting on the development, Jesse Powell, CEO of Kraken, said:

“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,”  adding that “cryptocurrency remains an important humanitarian tool, especially at a time when many around the world can no longer rely on traditional banks and custodians.”

The move by Kraken is said to be the first-ever international aid distribution by the exchange. 

Binance Donates Crypto to Ukraine

Meanwhile, other crypto exchanges have also been taking similar relief action amidst the ongoing crisis between Ukraine and Russia. 

Binance Charity, the philanthropic arm of leading cryptocurrency exchange, Binance has also donated $2.5 million in crypto to the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) to support the organization’s efforts in helping affected Ukrainian children and families survive the ongoing crisis in their country.

Coinbase Will Not Block All Russians

As more crypto exchanges continue to block Russian users from accessing crypto services, leading US crypto exchange Coinbase has said it will not block the accounts of all Russian users on its platform. 

The company’s CEO noted that the reason for not restricting all Russians is due to the fact that many of them are against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and that crypto serves as a life saver for these citizens in the country at the moment.