Russia is pushing ahead on a draft bill that would require election candidates to disclose crypto holdings

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  • Russia approved the first reading of a draft bill that requires election candidates to disclose their crypto holdings.
  • This covers the candidates’ spouses and minor children. Under the bill, failure to do so may result in imprisonment.
  • The tightening stance may come after Kremlin’s staunchest critic received roughly $300,000 worth of bitcoin this year, Reuters reported.
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The State Duma of Russia has approved the first reading of a new draft bill that will require its election candidates to publish their cryptocurrency holdings, CoinTelegraph first reported Wednesday.

The State Duma is one of the chambers of the Russian parliament. It is tasked with implementing federal constitutional and federal laws, consisting of 450 members elected for five years.

The draft bill, introduced in March, will compel election candidates to disclose their purchases and expenditures for the past three years, as well as those of their spouses and minor children, according to CoinTelegraph.

Following the first reading will be consideration of potential amendments in June.

Russia’s tightening stance may come after its staunchest critic, Alexei Navalny, received roughly $300,000 worth of bitcoin earlier this year, Reuters reported. The opposition leader, along with his movement, has reportedly accepted bitcoin donations since 2016.

In December 2020, President Vladimir Putin ordered his public officials and those seeking office to report their cryptocurrency holdings by June 30 this year, Reuters reported.

Failure to do so, according to the decree, would lead to consequences, including a jail term of up to three years, Russian local news reported that time.

Later in the month, on December 28, the Kremlin government published a letter obligating some officials to liquidate their digital financial assets by April 1, according to CoinTelegraph.

The vote to elect for the State Duma, Russia’s lower house of parliament, is slated for September this year.

Cryptocurrencies have exploded in popularity in 2021, with many of the cryptocurrencies scaling new highs.