Ukraine-Russia: Russian foreign minister denies claims president Vladimir Putin has serious illness

Russia’s foreign minister has dismissed claims that president Vladimir Putin is suffering from a serious illness.

In an interview with a French TV station, Sergei Lavrov insisted that the president was in good health.

The rebuttal comes after weekend reports allegedly from a Russian spy, which claimed that Mr Putin, 69, had three years to live due to a form of cancer. The messages also claimed Mr Putin is losing his sight and suffering from headaches.

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Mr Lavrov said: “He appears in public every day. You can watch him, read and listen to him. I don’t think that sane people can see signs of some kind of illness or ailment. I leave it to the conscience of the liars.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin appeared in public on May 9 as part of a celebration of the end of World War Two.
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There has been ongoing speculation about Mr Putin’s health in recent months after he appeared to be taking extreme precautions, believed to be due to worries over Covid-19, such as seating anyone he met with – even his closest advisers - at the other end of a long table.

Earlier this month, former UK government intelligence official Christopher Steele claimed that Mr Putin is now “constantly surrounded by doctors”.

He said that meetings of the Kremlin’s security council that are shown to supposedly last for a whole hour are “actually broken up into several sections”, with Mr Putin receiving medical treatment between meetings.

The Kremlin has previously dismissed claims that Putin was suffering from Parkinson’s disease as “absolute nonsense”.

In November 2020, Professor Valery Solovei – a former historian at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations – reportedly said Putin was suffering from both cancer and Parkinson’s.

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