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China Nabs Illegal Miners As Ukraine Calls for Total Ban on Exchanges Servicing Russians

Chinese local authorities have busted a mining farm in Guangzhou and Jieyang, both in Guangdong, disguised as an electric vehicle charging station. The authorities disclosed the farms flaunted as an EV charging center but behind had several mining rigs.

In total, the authorities claimed to have sized about 1,100 mining pieces of equipment from the two cities. In Guangzhou, about 190 rigs worth about $791k were reportedly seized, while 916 were confiscated in Jieyang.

According to the statement from Guangdong Province, the EV charging ports enabled the clandestine mining operations to last for as long as 1000 hours. The miners themselves reminded hidden from authorities to avoid being apprehended. 

Crypto Mining Operations in China

Recall that last June, China suspended miners permanently from engaging in all Proof-of-Work-related activities, also known as mining. This came after the country witnessed a sharp rise in electricity consumption. The ban resulted in the miners relocating to other parts of the world, settling in countries like Kazakhstan, Russia, Canada, and the United States. 

China has a strong law prohibiting mining, and anyone caught in the act could face many years in prison. Currently, various local governments are increasing electricity bills to wade people off from engaging in PoW activities. 

Interestingly, the Asian nation still accounts for 10% of BTC transactions worldwide. According to China’s Central Bank, this is progress considering that it was 90% before the blanket ban on crypto last September. 

Ukraine Advocates for Total Ban on Exchanges Servicing Russian Traders

Meanwhile, Ukraine has called on crypto exchanges offering their services to Russian users to stop following the war with Russia. On Tuesday, Deputy Minister of Digital Transformation Alex Bornyakov said that crypto firms servicing Russians would face criticism if they continue their service offerings.

Speaking to Reuters, the Ukrainian minister made this call as he suspects Russian users will try as much as possible to circumvent sanctions through digital currencies. The minister had previously asked exchanges to halt Russian services last month, but major exchanges like Kraken warned against adhering to such actions.

Kraken disclosed that such a request must be backed by the law before it could oblige. Kraken thinks that cryptocurrencies shouldn’t be involved in world politics. Binance shares the same opinion. Recently, reports suggest that the crypto exchange could join in the sanctions. 

While exchanges are deliberating whether to join in the sanctions or not, Coinbase has agreed to stop offering crypto services to Russians. Recently, it announced that it had blocked more than 25,000 wallet addresses linked to Russian users and individuals using crypt as a front to commit financial crimes. However, the exchange claims that it didn’t block Russian users. 

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