The cryptocurrency market capitalization dropped to US$1.58 trillion, its lowest since August, with the selloff yet to fully calm down. Bitcoin has tumbled 5.6% in less than two hours to US$34,958, while Ethereum fell by 7.7 percent to US$2,382. The decline in the cryptocurrency market was in sync with a worldwide market downturn sparked by Russia’s decision to start military action against Ukraine on Thursday morning.
Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies fall after Putin’s war declaration
The global cryptocurrency market cap dipped to US$1.58 trillion, the lowest since August, with the selloff yet to completely stabilize. According to CoinGecko’s data, the top five cryptocurrencies are all falling, with Bitcoin dropping 5.6% in less than two hours to US$34,958, while Ethereum fell by 7.7% to US$2,382.
The price of Terra has also fallen further, retracing part of its gains from Thursday morning Asia time and joining the crypto top 10 in the losers’ column at US$55.89, down from its 24-hour peak of US$62.92.
Explosions have been reported in Ukraine, and European aviation authorities have issued a warning about the danger of civil planes being shot down. The West has prepared comprehensive sanctions against Russia while Putin warned foreign nations against meddling.
Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe. It is the second-largest country in Europe by size, after Russia, which borders to the east and northeast. The current population of Ukraine is 43,301,680 as of Thursday, February 24, 2022.
Russia-Ukraine conflict summary
The conflict began in February 2014, when Russia and pro-Russian forces attacked Ukraine, primarily over the status of Crimea and parts of the Donbas. The war’s major focus has been on the status of Crimea and other disputed territories that are widely regarded as part of Ukraine by international law.
Russian military buildup on Ukraine’s border has exacerbated tensions between the two countries and strained bilateral ties during 2021-22, with the United States delivering a strong message that an invasion would be met with severe consequences for Russia’s economy.
Despite warnings from the West that the decision might lead to far-reaching punitive measures, Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday recognized the independence of two separatist regions in eastern Ukraine during an emotional address broadcast on state television, despite Western worries.
“I believe it is necessary to take a long overdue decision, to immediately recognise the independence and sovereignty of the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Lugansk People’s Republic”
– Vladimir Putin
Analysts believe that this could be the start of a larger conflict in Ukraine, and many officials are labeling the action an assault on Ukraine’s independence.
Conflict is nothing new to the Donbas region. For nearly eight years, it has been the scene of a low-intensity conflict between Russian separatists and Ukrainian troops that has resulted in more than 14,000 fatalities. Following the Kremlin’s surprise decision on Monday, concerns have been dramatically amplified. The Ukrainian government in Kyiv claims that the two areas are, in fact, Russian-occupied territories. The self-declared republics have no recognized government except Russia. The Ukrainian administration has refused to communicate with either separatist republic directly.