LocalBitcoins and Iran have parted ways following weeks of rising rial trading volumes with the US sanctions likely to be the cause. LocalBitcoins, a peer to peer Bitcoin exchange, has not clearly stated why the Iranians are suddenly being cut off from the services. Earlier this week, news circulated across local language telegram channels that the exchanges had blocked Iranians.
The users on the website experienced problems posting new trades and updating previous ones. Iranians with accounts could withdraw Bitcoin but not trade on the platform.
After LocalBitcoins and Iran divorced, a message appeared on LocalBitcoins Iran’s page that read:
“Unfortunately, LocalBitcoins is currently not available in your selected region.” On Twitter, the exchange told several Iranian users: “Our services are not available in your region for risk-based reasons.”
LocalBitcoins has been the most popular website among Iranians. This’s because it doesn’t require international credit card information, something Iranians have been delayed for decades. The website also allowed users to pay with their local bank accounts.
According to users, the website was open to reviewing local bank accounts documents to resolve potential problems. This’s because Iranians are primarily isolated from the international banking system.
Although CoinDesk, a news outlet, asked for the reasons why LocalBitcoins and Iran decided to part ways, the P2P exchange had not given a response as of the time of writing. Undoubtedly, it might be the increasing economic sanctions imposed by the US on Iran that prompted LocalBitcoins and Iran to go their separate ways.
Over a year, the US President, Donald Trump, withdrew from Iran’s nuclear deal. In the past years, legitimate Iranian crypto users have felt the effects of the sanctions as multiple exchanges like ShapeShift, and Binance stopped offering services.
Although LocalBitcoins and Iran have parted ways, Iranians seeking to sell and buy cryptocurrency have options. This is because the restrictions are pushing Iranians towards decentralized exchanges that don’t discriminate based on nationality.
The Iranians can now use Bisq and Hodl Hodl as options because they are similar to LocalBitcoins. Some Iranian users have turned to the KeepChange peer-to-peer exchange as an alternative. Iranians and other crypto enthusiasts around the world can use KeepChange for selling and buying Bitcoin without worrying about sanctions, money seizures, and or censorship.
Do you think US sanctions have a hand in the failed relationship between LocalBitcoins and Iran?
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