$20 Million of Crypto Donated to Ukraine Following Russian Invasion

Some $20 million worth of cryptocurrency had been donated in support of Ukraine's resistance to Russia's invasion as of Monday morning.

This comes after the country's official Twitter account shared two cryptocurrency wallet addresses on Saturday, through which it would directly receive donations of Bitcoin, Ethereum or Tether.

Ukraine is currently in the grips of armed conflict with Russia, its larger neighbor who invaded the country last week after years of tension, sending forces to advance on the Ukrainian capital Kyiv. The move has been met with international outcry and alarm.

On Monday, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet said at least 102 civilians in Ukraine have been killed with hundreds more injured, though the real figure may be considerably higher.

As Ukraine, a country of around 44 million people, resists Russia's advance, it has asked for donations via its official Twitter account. One such tweet on Saturday called for cryptocurrency donations specifically. It shared the addresses of two cryptocurrency wallets and read: "Stand with the people of Ukraine. Now accepting cryptocurrency donations. Bitcoin, Ethereum and USDT."

Ukraine's cryptocurrency wallet tweet initially led to some skepticism that it was legitimate. However, multiple crypto experts have since verified the tweet.

Vitalik Buterin, the Canadian-Russian founder of the cryptocurrency Ethereum, tweeted on Saturday that he had been "getting some confirmations from a couple sources that it's legit" and would be deleting a previous warning he had made.

This was followed by a tweet from Tomicah Tillemann, a former U.S. diplomat in the State Department and tech policy expert, who claimed he had "confirmed directly with Ukrainian ambassador @olex_scherba that the addresses are correct and in the control of the Ukrainian government."

According to Blockchain.com's wallet search tool, the two cryptocurrency wallets had together received around $10.3 million as of about 6 a.m. ET on Monday, of which millions had already been transferred out of the wallets, presumably by the Ukrainian government.

However, the total amount of crypto donations to Ukraine may be far higher. Cryptocurrency security company Elliptic updated a blog post on Monday in which it stated that the Ukrainian government as well as NGOs had raised $20 million in cryptocurrency donations since the start of Russia's invasion. At one point, a single donation reportedly amounted to $3 million in Bitcoin.

In addition to the governmental donations, millions had been given to NGOs like Come Back Alive, a charity supporting Ukraine's military, Elliptic said.

Ukraine soldiers
Civilian participants in a Kyiv Territorial Defense unit train in Kyiv, Ukraine, on January 22nd, 2022. Some $20 million worth of cryptocurrency had been donated in support of Ukraine's resistance to Russia's invasion as of Monday morning. Sean Gallup/Getty