China steps up its crackdown on cryptocurrency

Chinese authorities have stepped up their crackdown on cryptocurrency, arresting more than 1,100 people suspected of using digital assets to launder money and ordering the closure of a crypto-mining site in one of its western provinces.

The Ministry of Public Security said in a statement that the Chinese police launched a campaign involving 23 provinces, regions and cities, arresting more than 170 groups suspected of engaging in cryptocurrency trading to launder money obtained through telephone and internet fraud.

It added that the suspects frequently transferred assets from one cryptocurrency to another to cover their tracks.

And the American newspaper, “The Wall Street Journal”, said that the campaign of arrests came after the Chinese authorities pledged to “take strict measures against Bitcoin mining,” noting that this was part of broader efforts to protect against financial risks arising from cryptocurrency trading, and reduce energy consumption used in mining operations. in the country.

The newspaper pointed out that the security crackdown reinforced fears of suppression of the cryptocurrency market, which led to a strong sell-off of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Bitcoin hit $36,755.77 last Thursday, after having been as high as $64,802 a piece in mid-April.

China opposes the high demand for cryptocurrency mining, a technology that needs intensive electric power, which contradicts Beijing's energy goals, especially with Chinese President Xi Jinping's insistence on setting ambitious goals to reduce the use of coal.

China has a very strong stance against cryptocurrencies, said Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at London-based brokerage AvaTrade.

Noting that China has started banning the addresses of cryptocurrency mining platforms on the Internet in China.

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