In commemoration of a year since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the country has released a set of stamps featuring an intriguing portrayal of Russian President Vladimir Putin engaged in a judo match against a young boy. This artistic depiction is based on a mural created by the renowned British street artist ‘Banksy,’ which emerged in the Kyiv region of Borodianka in October.
Vladimir Putin, a black belt in judo, has been an ardent supporter of the sport, attending major events like the World Championships and the 2012 London Olympic Games. However, his involvement in the invasion of Ukraine led to his suspension as the honorary president of the International Judo Federation.
The Ukrainian stamps also bear the inscription “FCK PTN,” in reference to the political message conveyed through the artwork. The mural, now imprinted on the stamps, shows a young child triumphantly flipping Putin during their judo encounter. The image has struck a chord with Ukrainians, who have been eagerly queuing up to purchase these stamps as a show of support for their country.
Banksy, known for his subversive and politically charged art since the 1990s, has been actively engaged in supporting the Ukrainian war effort. To aid the country, Banksy sold 50 limited-edition prints, directing all proceeds towards Ukraine.
The British artist’s murals have appeared in several cities deeply affected by the conflict in Ukraine. He even released a video showcasing seven new artworks on buildings that bore the scars of war.
During the creation of the mural in Borodianka, local resident Yula Patoku and her six-year-old daughter, Zlata, had the opportunity to interact with Banksy. Zlata expressed her fondness for the artwork, viewing it as a representation of a child rescuing his father from a menacing monster. This interpretation symbolizes Ukraine’s heroic stand against Russia’s aggression.
The impactful mural, now captured in postage stamps, carries a profound message of resilience and determination, serving as a permanent reminder of Ukraine’s resolve in the face of adversity.
The International Judo Federation removes Vladimir Putin and Arkady Rotenberg from all positions at the organization due to Russia’s attack on Ukraine.
Putin’s honorary presidency was previously suspended because of the ongoing war conflict in Ukraine.
Putin is an avid judoka and holds a black belt in judo, having co-authored a book on the sport.
Arkady Rotenberg, a long-time friend of Putin, held the position of “development manager” in the IJF executive committee.
World Taekwondo also stripped Putin of his honorary black belt due to Russia’s actions in Ukraine, citing their vision of “Peace is more precious than triumph,” and the values of respect and tolerance.
John Davis is a dedicated practitioner of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, having first started training in the martial art in 2011. Despite facing significant knee issues that have sidelined him for a period, John remains passionate about the sport and continues to follow all the latest developments in the BJJ community.