Zelenskyy wears t-shirt with NFT designed by S’porean girl during virtual speech at Shangri-La Dialogue

SINGAPORE — When Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy delivered a speech to an audience of 500 at the Shangri-La dialogue on Saturday June 11, soliciting support to end the war in his country, he didn’t start with pictures bloodshed or razed battlefields.

Instead, he began his special address to delegates – among them ministers and senior defense officials from around 40 countries – by talking about the T-shirt he was wearing, which bears an NFT image (token not expendable) designed by “a girl in Singapore”.

It shows a girl spray-painting the blue and yellow colors of the Ukrainian flag.

Speaking via live stream from a secret location in Kyiv, Ukraine, Mr Zelenskyy said the girl had written him a letter asking for his help in raising awareness for an initiative she called “Spray Paint Ukraine”, which aims to raise funds for the country recently invaded by Russia.

“It is a request of this girl for her idea, her confidence that the Ukrainian president will really respond to her initiative and that I will be ready to help her is of crucial importance,” he said.

He then asked, rhetorically, if Russian President Vladimir Putin would have been so responsive and supportive if a stranger had approached him with a similar request.

“Is he just going to read the letter from the Singapore Embassy offering to support the idea of ​​a girl he doesn’t know?” Would he wear the shirt? I think it’s impossible,” he said.

“And that is what is really happening. It is the confrontation between the possible that we, and many people around the world, need, and the impossible that Russia is fighting so desperately for,” he said. he said, before talking about the importance of maintaining a global order based on the rule of law and not leaving small nations at the mercy of big powers.

After the speech, an individual named Calvin Soh wrote on the LinkedIn networking platform that the design was done by his daughter, Ava.

“Ava did this as a wearable NFT to raise funds for Ukraine. She worked with BigBeyond for the NFT and the T-shirt. So it’s a project made in SG,” he said.

According to a website he linked to in the post, the fundraiser will be via a limited drop of 1,000 NFTs along with a free t-shirt. The T-shirt with the same image can also be purchased separately, with proceeds going to the Ukrainian Embassy in Singapore.

“I believe there is a human generation that wants to help and NFTs can amplify that. And perhaps this is how we can demonstrate the true power of decentralized good,” reads a post on the Daughters of the Revolution (DOTR) website.

A separate article states that DOTR was founded by Ava when she was 14 years old.

TODAY has reached out to Mr. Soh and DOTR for comment.

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