Binance Warns Iranian Traders to Withdraw Crypto from Platform

In response to US Sanctions against Iran, Malta-based crypto platform Binance has advised its Iranian users to remove their investments from the crypto exchange.

Binance is urging its remaining Iranian traders to withdraw their assets from its platform. The popular cryptocurrency exchange has sent out an email to its customers, advising them to remove investments from the exchange in response to US sanctions.

“If you have an account with Binance and fall into that [sanctions] category, please withdraw your assets from Binance as soon as possible,” warns the email Binance sent to its users in Iran.

The Malta-based exchange was initially blocking only traders that provided Iranian-issued passports as part of the know-your-customer (KYC) verification process. However, later this week Binance warned users whose accounts are connected to Iranian IP addresses to withdraw their funds from the platform.

According to Sepehr Mohammadi, chairman of the Blockchain Association of Iran, Iranian traders have been receiving similar emails for several months, and should expect even more in the coming months. Speaking to IBENA, Mohammadi said several US platforms -- including Binance and Bittrex -- have already unofficially removed the Islamic Republic from the list of countries eligible to receive services.

This is not the first time the cryptocurrency industry has been affected by economic sanctions imposed on Iran by the US. After the first round of sanctions in July, Mohammadi accused Donald Trump’s administration of confiscating over $6 million worth of BTC from Iranian traders.

“Last year (2017), the remarkable volume of bitcoin which belonged to some Iranians was confiscated due to unspecified reasons by the Federal government of the United States,” said the chairman of the Blockchain Association of Iran at the time, “and the process of confiscation is still continuing.”

Mohammadi stated the owners of the confiscated crypto were unable to take legal action against the US, as cryptocurrency and digital assets are banned in the Middle East country.

The chairman highlighted crypto and blockchain’s potential to allow individuals and organizations to circumvent the sanctions. Mohammadi stated he believes the country’s focus should be on employing blockchain infrastructure to cope with the sanctions. In April, the Central Bank of Iran banned Iranian banks from dealing in foreign cryptocurrency in order to prevent ‘terrorism financing and money laundering’, but later withdrew the ban after the first round of sanctions.

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