a month ago 2 min read

Within a Year of War, Ukraine Received Sizable Donation Via Cryptocurrency


Throughout the war, cryptocurrencies have been used for evil, but they have also offered Ukraine many reasons to feel strong.

Geopolitical issues and the impact of cryptocurrencies on them don't always make for enjoyable reading. For instance, the US is concerned that digital assets could provide sanctioned parties with a new means of evading the banking system.

Nevertheless, as the war in Ukraine has shown, the use of crypto in international politics is much more nuanced and intricate.

According to data from blockchain data analytics startup Elliptic, private bitcoin fundraising for pro-Ukrainian activities has outpaced Russian rivals by a ratio of 44 to 1 over the past year.

Ukraine has received almost $70 million in cryptocurrencies since the start of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, enabling it to pay for military equipment and supplies.

About five months into the battle, 54 volunteer organizations agreed to spread false information, generate money for Russian military procurement, and create pro-invasion propaganda. At the time, these organizations had received about $2.2 million in donations, some of which had been given before the invasion.

Over 100 pro-Russian organizations have received funding totaling close to $5.4 million so far in the first year of the war. Such donations have reduced during the course of the year.

The information was gathered from research published on February 24 by blockchain analytics company Chainalysis, which found that the majority of the money were made up of Ethereum and Bitcoin.

ETH donors provided the most ($28.9 million), followed by Bitcoin and USDT donors ($22.8 million and $11.6 million, respectively).

Nonfungible Tokens (NFTs) have also been utilized as a kind of contribution; UkraineDAO sold one NFT for $6.1 million at auction.

The article claims that contributors gave Bitcoin to Task Force Rusich, a sanctioned Russian paramilitary organization operating in Ukraine, and that Rusich subsequently transferred the money to a high-risk exchange.

87.3% of the funds went to pro-Russian organizations, and 4.4% went to high-risk exchanges. With greater percentages moving to DeFi protocols and sanctioned exchanges, cybercriminal administrators associated to ransomware gangs and other nefarious operations operating over the same time period transmitted 30.3% of their cash to mainstream exchanges.

To what have been referred to as pro-Ukraine causes, more than $200 million worth of cryptocurrencies has been transferred. These donations, which together amount to more than $80 million, were made directly to the Ukrainian government.

Despite the ongoing donations to pro-Russian organizations, money laundering activities, and ransomware attacks, cryptocurrencies have provided a variety of positive benefits for Ukraine, boosting resilience during trying times and luring international support for those affected by Russia's invasion.

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