In the midst of the war between Russia and Ukraine, the health of the russian presidentVladimir Putin, who turns 70 on October 7, is the subject of all kinds of rumors and theories, which are gaining more and more strength as a result of the lack of information about the well-being of the president.
However, it is not something specific to this warlike confrontation. It is that during his last two mandates, almost nothing has been leaked about his true state of healthexcept for images that seem to indicate that he is in good shape: Putin on horseback, Putin fishing without a shirt, Putin as a judoka…
But as the Russian president ages and his physique changes over the years, speculation about a possible disease grows.
The Russian website Proekt published the Fuller investigation into Putin’s state of health. This independent media concluded that the president’s trips to his house in Sochi, on the shores of the Black Sea in recent years, coincided with the arrival of a large group of doctors. Among them was a thyroid cancer specialist, Yevgeny Selivanov.
Vladimir Putin, on horseback and without a shirt. Photo RIA-NOVOSTI / ALEXEY DRUZHININ.
At that time, some rumors spoke of blood baths extracted from the antlers of Siberian deer, which supposedly improve life expectancy and sexual vigora method recommended by the Russian Minister of Defense, Sergey Shoigu, originally from Siberia.
According to the French weekly Paris Match, during visits to France in 2017 and Saudi Arabia in 2019, Putin was escorted to the bathroom by a team in charge of collecting his feces to avoid any sample that could give information about his state of health.
Recently, the weekly Newsweek, citing US intelligence sources, claimed that Putin had been treated in April for advanced cancer. The US National Security Council denied being the source of the information.
The head of Ukrainian intelligence, General Kyrylo Budanov, told Sky News that Putin had cancer.
Vladimir Putin at a session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. Photo REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
The only time the Kremlin confirmed that Putin had a health problem was in the fall of 2012, when he disappeared from the public eye and canceled meetings. At the time, the Kremlin referred to a muscle strain and a Russian newspaper pointed to back problems.
According to the Proekt page, it was during this period that significant health problems appeared. The coronavirus pandemic caused the Russian president to behave strangely, according to observers, reflecting his paranoia.
Officially, the head of state is vaccinated but, unlike most of his counterparts around the world, no image of him receiving his dose has ever been published.
Its visitors are subject to drastic precautionary measures, including quarantine days or in the case of French President Emmanuel Macron, a giant oval table that kept him at a distance from the Russian leader during a tense meeting in the Kremlin.
Only visitors who agree to undergo the tests – which Macron refused – are allowed to approach Putin and shake his hand.
Putin’s health: his allies deny the rumors
The spokesman for the Russian presidency, Dmitri Peskov, has always denied this information. Also the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, who declared at the end of May on the French channel TF1 that no one “who has his whole head can see in this person (Putin) signs of a disease or any other condition“.
For his part, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, a Putin ally, said in a March interview on Japanese television: “If you think something is wrong with President Putin, you are the most unfortunate person in the world.”
Vladimir Putin and the President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko. AP Photo.
In his recent appearances, including a forum on Peter the Great and a meeting with Turkmenistan’s president, Serdar Berdimuhamedov, Putin has shown no sign of weakness.
Most observers believe that Putin, with no clear successor in the Kremlin, will stand again in the 2024 elections after controversial constitutional changes allow him to aspire to a third term.
“The country does not have a grain of truth about the physical and emotional state of its president“, regrets Proekt’s editor-in-chief, Roman Badanin.
He added: “The entire planet does not know if a person who can destroy humanity by pressing a red button is in good health.”
With information from AFP.