The Tron (TRX) founder, soon-to-be astronaut, and World Trade Organization (WTO) diplomat Justin Sun is “playing both sides” of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, social media users have remarked – after Sun posted what appeared to be news of talks with a senior Russian diplomat.
In the Chinese-language posts, Sun wrote that in a video call with his Russian counterpart, they had discussed ways that technology “could be used for humanitarian cases for Russia’s development,” including the “use of blockchain technology to help citizens who don’t have access to the financial system.” He concluded by writing:
“[We/I] hope to strengthen future cooperation with Russia!”
The post caused no shortage of confusion among Sun’s followers – particularly as the Tron founder has been so vocal in social media about his support for Ukraine.
Last month, he posted about how his talks with his Ukrainian counterpart at the WTO had confirmed addresses for crypto donations.
And just over a week ago, he was urging the Tron community to “keep showing how crypto can do for good” – by donating TRX tokens to Ukraine and Ukraine-affiliated charities and feting the fact that USD 0.7m worth of tron had already been donated.
But his meeting with Russia’s Lyakishev appears to have sowed the seeds of confusion. Sun published the post on March 1, and on Twitter, one user replied by asking:
“Have you been kicked in the head by a donkey? Are you coming out in support of Russia now?”
On Weibo, one user wrote:
“Sun is giving money to Ukraine and working with Russia. He’s eating on both sides of the table [a Chinese idiom meaning “playing both sides”].”
Others, jokingly perhaps, claimed that Sun could run for the post of President of the United States, while some celebrated his increasingly prominent role on the global diplomatic stage.
But in China, support of Russia is no laughing matter. On social media platforms like Weibo, posts from Russian state-funded media outlets regularly attract hundreds of comments supporting the “military operations” in Ukraine, with many voicing their support for President Vladimir Putin in glowing terms.