: Ukrainian government promises to reward crypto donors with ‘air drop,’ continues calls on U.S. tech industry to pressure Russia

The government of Ukraine continued its appeal to the global cryptocurrency community for financial support, promising in a tweet early Wednesday morning to reward donors with an “airdrop” of digital assets on Thursday, March 3 at 11 am Eastern Time.

The announcement followed a confirmation by the Ukrainian government that Gavin Wood, co-founder of the Ethereum

blockchain and creator of the Polkadot

blockchain, gave $5 million in digital assets to support Ukraine’s efforts fighting off a Russian invasion.

Air drops are typically used by crypto projects to reward users of the project with tokens that are valuable within the ecosystem, though it remains unclear as to what form the Ukrainian rewards will take.

The government said in its tweet that Mykhailo Fedorov, Ukraine’s Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation for Ukraine, would be the point person going forward for its crypto donation campaign, which has so far raised nearly $40 million across more than 29,000 in crypto donations, according to blockchain analysis firm Elliptic. $10.7 million of that was donated just on Tuesday, including Gavin Wood’s donation an a non-fungible token worth $200,000.

Mykhailo Fedorov, Ukraine’s 31 year-old Vice Prime Minister

Roman Dubetskyi

Fedorov, who at 31 is Ukraine’s youngest minister, has gained notoriety in the west of late for his efforts to make ties with U.S. tech companies. Following the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, Fedorov tweeted at Tesla and Space X CEO Elon Musk requesting that he send equipment that would enable the use of Space X’s satellite internet service, Starlink.

“Elon Musk, while you try to colonize Mars — Russia try to occupy Ukraine,” Federov wrote Saturday. “We ask you to provide Ukraine with Starlink stations and to address sane Russians to stand.” Two days later, he tweeted a photo, apparently of Starlink equipment packed into boxes on the back of a truck.

In the past 24 hours, Federov has taken to tweeting at other American companies, including Apple Inc.
Visa Inc.

Mastercard Inc.

and Oracle Corp.
requesting that these firms cut off services to all Russian citizens.

Some companies have been reluctant to remove their products and services from Russia, fearing that the move would be counterproductive for the Ukrainian effort.

Nick Clegg, president of global affairs at Facebook parent Meta Platforms, for instance told reporters on a call Tuesday that the company disagrees with calls to disable all access to social media in Russia, according to the Washington Post.

“We think it is essential for as long as this can continue that ordinary Russians can use our services to express themselves, to organize, to protest and to reach out to family and friends in the wider community,” Clegg said.

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