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Russian President Vladimir Putin may have used his lengthy speech at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on Friday to dispel widespread rumors about his health.

Putin, 69, has been involved in a widely condemned war in Ukraine in recent months, but various videos of the longtime Russian leader have sparked social media speculation that he may be suffering from a secret illness. Some of these claims even preceded the start of the Russo-Ukrainian war, but speculation intensified when Putin invaded Ukraine in late February.

This was reported to the British newspaper by Keir Giles, a senior fellow at the Russia and Eurasia program at Chatham House, a think tank for international affairs. Mirror that Putin would like to “downplay the circulating rumors about his health.”

“The 72-minute speech as an endurance test, while nothing compared to his previous marathon press conferences, will still be impressive to those who said he was on the brink of death,” Giles said.

Putin denies health rumors
Russian President Vladimir Putin may have used his lengthy speech at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on Friday to dispel widespread rumors about his health. Above, Putin speaks at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on June 17, 2022 in St. Petersburg, Russia.
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Russian Foreign Ministry Sergey Lavrov at the end of last month denied the information about Putin’s serious illness.

“I don’t think that sane people can see in this person signs of some kind of illness or ailment,” Lavrov said in an interview with the French television channel TF1.

Lavrov added that Putin “appears in public every day” and people “can watch him on screens, read and listen to his speeches.”

Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov also told The Associated Press in March that the Russian president’s health was “really perfect.”

However, there have been several indications that this is not the case.

Three U.S. intelligence chiefs who read a secret U.S. intelligence report compiled at the end of May told Newsweek that the document says Putin appears to have resurfaced after being treated for advanced cancer in April.

A former British MI6 officer who ran the agency’s Russian department for many years told Sky News in May that he had heard Putin was “pretty seriously ill,” citing sources inside and outside Russia.

“It’s not entirely clear what kind of disease it is – whether it is incurable, incurable or something else,” Christopher Steele told the channel. “But of course I think it’s part of the equation.”

After Putin postponed his annual telephone marathon for the first time in 18 years, a Swedish economist who previously worked as an economic adviser to the Russian government suggested the move signaled his poor health.

“Every year, Putin has a direct connection with the Russian population in June, but not this year,” Anders Åslund. tweeted June 8. “This is another sign that his health is not up to par, because these events, which last 3-4 hours, are quite demanding, even if they are scheduled.”

Putin did not comment on the health rumors during his speech at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, but he sharply criticized the US and the West for the unprecedented sanctions imposed in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“If some “rebellious” state cannot be suppressed or pacified, then they try to isolate this state, or, in modern terms, “cancel”. the creators came from the “wrong” country.

“This is the nature of the current round of Russophobia in the West and insane sanctions against Russia,” he continued. “They are crazy and, I would say, frivolous. They are unprecedented in the number or pace at which the West is churning them out.”

Newsweek reached out to the Kremlin and Giles for comment.

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