Following the announcement by the crypto exchange OKX to discontinue its services in Russia, the NFT powerhouse has followed suit. This is consistent with the European Union’s new sanctions.

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News in a Glimpse:

  • Dapper Labs has announced that it will no longer provide payment services to NFT owners who are discovered to have ties to Russia.
  • According to the company, providing any value crypto-asset wallet, account, or custody services to accounts with Russian connections will be prohibited.
  • Users who are affected can still view their NFTs, but they will be unable to move funds, gift tokens, or sell and buy NFTs.
  • This comes after the European Union imposed new sanctions on Russia and Russian nationals, including financial sanctions.
  • This announcement disappointed many people, and the crypto Twitter community was flooded with mixed reactions.

Dapper Labs, a well-known NFT powerhouse, has announced that it will discontinue payment services for NFT owners found to have ties to Russia. Where the company stated that providing crypto-asset wallet, account, or custody services of any value to accounts with Russian connections will be prohibited. According to Dapper’s post, affected users can still view their NFTs, but they will no longer be able to move funds, gift tokens, or sell and buy NFTs.

According to the NFT powerhouse’s blog, this comes in the wake of European Union new sanctions imposed on Russia and Russian nationals. According to reports, the new sanctions include financial-related sanctions that will affect companies that provide services related to crypto assets.

Russian users can no longer transfer or move any of their funds, including crypto funds, to or from the EU as of October 6, Thursday last week. OKX, a cryptocurrency exchange platform, had already suspended operations in Russia prior to this announcement from Dapper Labs. As regulations tighten, more crypto products are expected to follow suit.

Despite the temporary account suspension, Dapper Labs has stated that any NFT purchased by the impacted user prior to their announcement will remain the respective user’s property. This also applies to a user’s Dapper balance, which, despite being frozen for the time being, remains the user’s property.

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Crypto Community’s Reactions

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As expected, many people were disappointed by this announcement, and the crypto Twitter community was flooded with mixed reactions. Users have pointed out that the main idea behind cryptocurrency is decentralization and censorship resistance, and that this announcement contradicts that. 

Furthermore, users believed that the current situation was completely beyond the firm’s control. A user has questioned Dapper Labs’ decision to follow European Union rules and its sanction. The user questioned whether immediate account suspension was the only way a Canadian-based company could comply with the sanctions.

According to another user, the Russian crypto community is “not equal” to the Russian government. Where the user stated that their community has been supported in every project released or implemented by Dapper Labs, and they anticipate receiving the same support in response.

The majority of the crypto community’s sentiments revolve around the idea that their digital assets have been frozen and they are unable to do anything with them, such as withdraw or sell. They can only watch it and nothing else.

Russian Militia and Crypto Space

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Ukraine’s border has been observed to be flooded by Russian troops in recent months, prompting the Western world to take drastic measures such as cutting economic ties that allegedly fuel Russia’s invasion and occupation.

Although global sanctions have already been imposed, millions of dollars are said to be flowing in directly to fuel Russian military and paramilitary groups in a form that has proven more difficult to control: cryptocurrency.

According to the report, pro-Russia militia groups were able to raise approximately $4 million in cryptocurrency donations from individuals who allegedly support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The aforementioned militia groups used Telegram and other instant messaging platforms to raise funds for rifles, body armor, and other items.

Despite this “success” in raising funds for military operations, Russia remains wary of cryptocurrency. Although the country’s authorities displayed some plans to carry out international payments using cryptocurrency, it all came to an end when the country’s president signed a law that banned crypto payments locally.

EU’s New Sanctions

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The European Union (EU), according to a statement released by the European Commission, will reportedly double their previous sanctions imposed against Russia. According to their statement, the commission will welcome the council’s adoption of an eighth package of tough sanctions against Russia in response to its aggression against Ukraine.

The new sanction will now completely ban all bitcoin and cryptocurrency wallets, accounts, and custody services in Russia, instead of just €10,000. The new sanction follows the announcement by Russia’s Ministry of Finance that it will allow industries to accept bitcoin and cryptocurrency for international trade.

Individuals and entities from Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia are also barred under the new sanctions. Individuals and entities sanctioned were allegedly involved in “Russian occupation, illegal annexation, and sham ‘referenda.'”

Furthermore, the European Union has imposed import restrictions and oil price caps totaling €7 billion. Export proposals were aimed at Russia’s military, industrial, and technological access, as well as its defense sector.

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