What is the state of Vladimir Putin’s health and why is it speculated – Europe – International

The health of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who turns 70 in Octoberis the subject of all kinds of rumors, which reveals the lack of information about the well-being of the president, who ordered the invasion of Ukraine on February 24.

(Read here: Putin makes his bodyguards store his excrement while he travels)

During his last two terms, almost nothing has been leaked about his true state of health, except for images that seem to indicate that he is in good shape: Putin on horseback, Putin fishing without a shirt, Putin as a judoka…

(It may interest you: Vladimir Putin was treated for cancer in April, says the US)

But as the Russian president ages and his physique changes over the years – his face appears swollen, his movements seem tense at times – speculation about a possible disease grows.

Vladimir Putin

Putin plunges into icy waters to celebrate Orthodox Epiphany (file photo).

Photo:

AFP / Alexey DRUZHININ

What rumors are circulating?

the russian website Project published the most comprehensive investigation into Putin’s state of health.

This independent media concluded that the president’s trips to his home 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.

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 that time, some rumors speak of blood baths extracted from the antlers of Siberian deer, supposed to improve life expectancy and sexual vigour, a 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, stated that Putin had been treated in April for advanced cancer. The US National Security Council denied being the source of the information. Ukrainian intelligence chief General Kyrylo Budanov told Sky News on his behalf that Putin had cancer.

What information is there?

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 covid-19 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.

Victory Day in Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin walks past a soldier during the Victory Day parade, commemorating the Soviet victory in World War II, in Moscow.

Photo:

EFE / Maxim Shipenkov

What does the Kremlin say?

The spokesman for the Russian presidency, Dmitri Peskov, has always denied this information.

“I do not think that someone who has his whole head can see in this person (Putin) signs of illness or any affectation,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told French network TF1 at the end of May.

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.”

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.

Because it is important?

Most observers believe Putin, with no clear successor in the Kremlin, will run again in 2024 after controversial constitutional changes allow him to run for a third term.

“The country does not have a grain of truth about the physical and emotional state of its president,” laments Proekt editor-in-chief Roman Badanin.

“The entire planet doesn’t know if a person who can destroy humanity by pressing a red button is in good health,” he says. And this could be a key element at a time when he is leading a bloody war in Ukraine, the outcome of which will mark the future of Europe.

AFP

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