Protesters burn Bitcoin ATM as El Salvador demonstrations take a new twist
El Salvadoran protesters kicking against the recently implemented Bitcoin have destroyed a crypto kiosk in the nation’s capital city of San Salvador.
Videos making rounds on social media show a Chivo-supported kiosk in San Salvador being burnt down amid a crowd of journalists and protesters on Wednesday.
The Bitcoin machine, one of several provided by the El Salvador government could be seen defaced with anti-BTC logos and a sign saying “democracy is not for sale.”
The Mayor of San Salvador Mario Durán confirmed that city workers had evacuated the area after receiving threats but are gearing up to return.
So far, the damage has been limited to the Chivo machine at the Plaza Gerardo Barrios in the heart of the capital city, but protesters also reportedly torched furniture from one of the plaza’s shops.
The Chivo kiosk (Bitcoin ATM) is one of about 200 in El Salvador, and President Bukele has said he hopes the crypto ATMs will eventually be “everywhere” in the country, even though he claimed that the use of Bitcoin is not mandatory.
El Salvador had faced internal resistance to the legislation even before the Bitcoin Law went into effect on Sept. 7. Protesters calling themselves the Popular Resistance and Rebellion Block marched in the capital city streets in July.
Also, the opposing FMLN party supported a public lawsuit seeking to abolish the Bitcoin legal tender law.