By Rob McLean and Michelle Toh, CNN Business

The price of bitcoin fell below $35,000 early Thursday after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a military operation in the Donbas region of Ukraine.

Bitcoin was trading at $34,969 as of 1:22 a.m. ET, according to CoinMarketCap. That’s a decline of more than 8% compared to a day earlier.  (Editor’s Note: The price of one bitcoin rose above $35,000 by 6:30 a.m. ET, and this story has been updated.)

The world’s most valuable cryptocurrency fell below $40,000 over the weekend, and has continued to slide as the Ukraine crisis intensifies.

Bitcoin slides below $37K amid escalating tension between Russia and Ukraine

Shedding value

The currency has lost almost half its value since its November high of $68,990 due to geopolitical tensions, the prospect of interest rate hikes by the US Federal Reserve and curbs by some major economies on digital assets.

Other cryptocurrencies also dropped hard early Thursday. Ethereum tumbled more than 12%, according to CoinMarketCap, while dogecoin was down more than 14%.

Ethereum and dogecoin were last trading at $2,349 and 10 cents, respectively.

Edward Moya, a senior market analyst of the Americas at Oanda, said in a note to clients Thursday that “many crypto investors have been humbled by the last crash.”

“They are hesitant to increase holdings given the tremendous uncertainty for risky assets,” he added.

Moya predicted that bitcoin would likely continue to “see decent resistance from the $40,000 level as geopolitical tensions will prevent risky assets from mustering up much of a rally.”

— CNN Business’ Diksha Madhok contributed to this report.

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