Ukraine Bans Military Personnel from Gambling Online

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has issued a decree prohibiting military personnel from accessing online gambling sites.

The Commander-in-Chief and military leadership must ensure Ukraine military personnel adhere to the new ban. (Source: Pexels)

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The decree stemmed from the decision of the National Security and Defense Council, which recognized the negative effects of online gambling, particularly on members of the military.

It was also a development that arose from the online petition launched by Ukrainian soldier and activist Sergeant Pavel Petrichenko, calling for a ban on military gambling and the closure of online casinos.

Petrichenko opined that such gambling activity was destroying the army and Ukrainian society and posed a dangerous risk of exposing the personal data of troops.

Unfortunately, Petrichenko was killed in action in the Donetsk region on April 15. The following day, Zelensky acknowledged the petition and announced that the National Security Council would address the gambling concerns.

The new ban will remain in place until martial law is over.

Ukraine to Act against Illegal Gambling

In the decree, Zelensky also confirmed that his government would work on limiting online gambling advertisements, blocking illegal devices, and limiting players’ time and expenses.

Ukraine's Security Service will check gambling organizers for compliance with the legislation within two months.

The Commander-in-Chief and leaders of military units in Ukraine have also been tasked with the responsibility of ensuring that military personnel do not visit gambling facilities and online casinos.

More Regulation News

Ukraine Gambling Sector Paid $56M in Taxes in 2023

Gambling was officially prohibited in Ukraine in 2009, but it became legal again in 2020. According to the Chairman of the Parliamentary Finance Committee, Danylo Hetmantsev, the gambling industry paid Hr 10.4 billion ($267 million) in taxes in 2023 and has contributed Hr 2.2 billion ($56 million) in the first two months of 2024.

Ukraine’s gambling regulator, the Commission for the Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries in Ukraine (KRAIL), also recently announced that it has received and assessed 194 gambling license applications in the first quarter of this year. From the total, the regulator approved 152, with 138 solely for gaming machines.

These statistics indicate the popularity of gambling in Ukraine, which serves as a great source of revenue for the country, especially during its war-torn period. While several regulations are being put in place to check the problems of gambling in the state, the chances of the government outrightly banning the activity again are now slimmer than ever.


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