Bitcoin caught in crossfire as Turkish opposition leader expresses support

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Shortly after a Friday morning ‘diktat’ by the newly appointed governor of Turkey’s central bank that effectively banned all use of cryptocurrency in the country, Bitcoin now appears to be caught in partisan dust as a party leader Turkish opposition has expressed support for the digital currency.

As reported by TBEN, Turkey’s central bank announced this morning that starting April 30, all cryptocurrency payments and fiat-crypto onramp transactions will be made illegal. In addition, “any direct or indirect use of cryptographic assets in payment services and the issuance of electronic money” will be prohibited.

In response to this drastic announcement, Turkish opposition party leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu spoke out in favor of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency in general in a series of Tweets:

“Who did you consult with the crypto decision, O sovereign?” He asked, presumably referring to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who has been called an authoritarian and dictator. “I will sit down and consult with all the stakeholders on this issue.”

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He later noted that after conversations with “stakeholders all day”, he came to the conclusion that crypto was the sector most likely for Turkey to produce “unicorn” companies worth. over a billion dollars. He added that the announcement showed that the ruling party had “no tolerance for young people.”

Beyond its usefulness as a topic of political discussion, the ban will have a material impact for many Turks. A 2019 survey found that Turkey is one of the top countries for cryptocurrency adoption (although this study has received extensive review), sports a Lira-linked stablecoin listed on several exchanges and a local exchange, BtcTurk, even sponsors soccer clubs.

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However, the writing may have been on the crypto wall in Turkey. In an effort to take control of the country’s payment infrastructure, Turkey banned PayPal in 2016. Likewise, plans were underway in 2020 for a government-run digital currency, and possibly more harmful to it. Turkish leaders, BTC has hit all-time highs against the lira. earlier this year.