New footage of Vladimir Putin appearing unsteady, fidgeting and biting his lip during an Orthodox Easter service in Moscow on Sunday has added to suspicions that the Russian leader is gravely ill.
The frail-looking strongman is seen swaying during mass celebrated by the Russian Orthodox Church, which has strongly backed its leader’s so-called ‘special military operation’ in Ukraine.
Putin, 69 – dressed in a dark blue suit, white shirt and dark purple tie – holds a red candle as he stands in Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Savior alongside Mayor Sergei Sobianin.
The warmongering president shifts uneasily, sticking his tongue out and biting his lip as Patriarch Kirill announces that ‘Christ is risen’ – joining other members of the congregation with the response: ‘Truly he is risen “.
Putin, who signed himself several times, did not speak otherwise.
Last week he was seen looking bloated and awkwardly clutching a table for support in a clip released by the Kremlin of a meeting with its Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu to discuss the fate of the beleaguered Ukrainian city from Mariupol.
The video showed Putin and his top adviser “both depressed and apparently in poor health”. tweeted Anders Aslund, a Swedish economist who was previously an adviser to Russia.
Asked if the White House has an assessment of the Russian president’s apparent ills, press secretary Jen Psaki declined to answer.
“I don’t have any assessment to offer from here,” Psaki said during a Monday press briefing.
Former British politician Louise Mensch said the footage from last week seems to support earlier reports that “Vladimir Putin has Parkinson’s disease”.
Other reports suggest Putin recently had 35 secret meetings with a cancer doctor – and became so paranoid about his health that he turned to unconventional therapies.
The Russian leader reportedly bathes in blood extracted from deer antlers, which are cut as they grow and still full of fresh blood, according to Russian investigative newspaper The Project.
Believers say the baths improve the cardiovascular system and rejuvenate the skin, the outlet explained.
The Kremlin has denied any claims that Putin is in poor health.
With post wires