The health of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who turns 70 in October, is the subject of all kinds of rumors, revealing the lack of information about the well-being of the president, who ordered the invasion of Ukraine on February 24.
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 healthy: Putin on horseback, Putin fishing with his bare torso, Putin as a judoka…
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 illness grows.
The Russian website Proekt published the most comprehensive 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.
At the time, some rumors spoke of blood baths extracted from the antlers of Siberian deer, which supposedly improve life expectancy and sexual vigor, 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. Ukrainian intelligence chief Gen. Kyrylo Budanov told Sky News on his behalf that Putin had cancer.
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 due to back pain. The Kremlin and its allies have denied all the rumors and experts estimate that Putin will run again in 2024 after controversial constitutional changes allow him to run for a third term. (AFP)