Binance Halts Accounts Linked to Hamas Following Israeli Request

In a recent development, cryptocurrency exchange Binance has taken action in response to requests from Israeli law enforcement, freezing accounts associated with Hamas militants. The move comes after an announcement on October 10 by Yi He, co-founder of Binance, via a WeChat post. He clarified that the freeze specifically targets Hamas and is not intended to impact the Palestinian people at large.

He emphasized that Hamas is recognized as a designated terrorist organization by the United Nations, necessitating cooperation from various entities, including banks and trading platforms, when freeze requests are received. According to He, this decision is not within Binance’s sole discretion, as it aligns with international regulations. He stated, “Palestine has an organized government. Hamas is a local militant group. They kill civilians; that’s the problem. Hamas is not Palestine; the freeze is targeted towards Hamas, not Palestine.”

Earlier reports from October 10 revealed that Israeli authorities, with the assistance of Binance, froze crypto accounts belonging to Hamas militants. Law enforcement alleged that these accounts were being used by terrorists to collect funds related to war efforts via social media platforms.

In a related context, the Israeli Web3 community initiated a charitable campaign named “Crypto Aid Israel” on October 9. This campaign aims to assist Israeli civilians affected by the ongoing conflict. The initiative accepts donations in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and various ERC-20 tokens, including USDT. Since its launch, the movement has garnered nearly $50,000 in cryptocurrency donations.

Yi He assured that regular users, including Palestinian civilians, would not be impacted by the account freezes. She drew parallels with previous situations, citing an example where Binance did not freeze the accounts of ordinary Russians during times of conflict between Russia and Ukraine. The exchange’s actions are specifically targeted at entities like Hamas, adhering to international regulations and legal obligations.

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