VLADIMIR Putin’s bizarre latest appearance has sparked rumours that footage of the Russian president has been edited while he undergoes treatment for cancer.
Putin’s head appeared “bloated” according to some commenters during Friday’s virtual meeting of Russia’s security council.
Some even claimed his head had been artificially attached to his body in manipulated footage.
The Kremlin said the president had made an online appearance with ministers and also spoke to the German Chancellor Olaf Scholz about the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.
It comes amid widespread rumours about Putin’s health, with some claiming he is due to have cancer surgery any day now.
The video has sparked further speculation about his condition, and whether the Kremlin is keeping the Russian people in the dark about 69-year-old mad Vlad.
One comment under the clip read: “His face and head look so bloated, especially his cheeks and around the back of his head.
“He looks photoshopped onto his body. It’s clearly him, but what a strange look.”
Another wrote: “Either his clothing is too tight around the neck, or he sits in an unfortunate position.”
Putin told Chancellor Scholz about “the logic and primary objectives of the special military operation protecting the people’s republics in Donbas and spoke about measures providing for the security of the civilian population,” Russian news agency Interfax reported.
He told the German leader that “civilians held by Ukrainian servicemen on the premises of the Azovstal steelworks in Mariupol had been evacuated with the participation of representatives of the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross.”
Putin also repeated his assertions that Ukraine’s soldiers were infected with “Nazi ideology” and were engaging in “ongoing flagrant violations of the norms of international humanitarian law and… inhumane terrorist methods”.
It follows bizarre claims that Putin is prepared to use body doubles during his public appearances to hide his health crisis from the public.
Rumours on the anti-Kremlin Telegram Channel General SVR allege that the lookalikes would keep up appearances that all is well in Moscow.
In the post, the channel claims that canned footage had been made of Putin in meetings and signing decrees in a “cover-up” to make it seem that he is working.
The Telegram channel claimed: “The president’s movements, if necessary, will be imitated by one of the two lookalikes.”
It went on: “The possibility of a lookalike walking in public has been prepared. Everything is basically ready.”
His face and head look so bloated, especially his cheeks and around the back of his head
On Thursday, a recording emerged of a Russian oligarch claiming Putin is “very ill with blood cancer,” in the latest sign that his health is being discussed openly among the country’s elite.
In the clip, the oligarch, who is said to be close to the Kremlin, also accuses Putin of “ruining” the economies of Russia and Ukraine through his doomed war.
The recording was allegedly made in mid-March and was shared with New Lines Magazine by a Western venture capitalist who has worked in Russia.
They shared the clip, which they recorded secretly, in return for anonymity, as they were so disgusted at the conflict.
“The problem is with [Putin’s] head,” the oligarch said. “One crazy guy can turn the world upside down.”
Further rumours of Putin’s health were sparked following disturbing footage of the Russian leader looking frail with a green blanket across his legs as he watched Monday’s Victory Day Parade in Moscow.
His speech that day was widely seen as an anti-climax, as he had been expected to either declare some kind of victory in Ukraine or announce the full mobilisation of the Russian army in the war.
But after his speech, he was seen with a thick blanket covering his knees as he sat with Russian World War Two veterans, despite the temperature in Moscow being about 9C on Monday.
Kremlin officials have continually denied there is anything wrong with Putin, who turns 70 in October.
However, this week, a Kremlin insider claimed that the mental health of the Russian president is “bad” and that there is a “very real threat” that he could launch nuclear weapons.
A billionaire oligarch close to Putin reportedly told associates that “big business closely affiliated to power are sitting quiet as mice because the emperor’s madness is real, and the nuclear strike’s threat is very real, too”.
The source added: “Putin’s psychiatric health is bad indeed, and stories about him going bonkers are not a joke.
“There is some really serious trauma there, with everyone scared of its consequences.”
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