Vladimir Putin has missed an annual ice hockey game, where he usually stars, raising new concerns about his health amid persistent rumors that the Russian strongman has multiple medical problems.
The Russian leader, 69, has made a habit of sliding across the ice during an annual game during Russia’s Night Hockey League National Festival in May.
But this year, while Putin was “expected” to participate, he instead sent a video message wishing competitors “good luck in their ice battles” — despite the president’s Sochi Black Sea report, where the match took place on Tuesday.
It is only the second time the president has missed the game since 2012, primarily due to health concerns.
In May 2021, Putin boasted that ice hockey offered him longevity, and he used his appearance to spot rumors about his health at the time.
“You extend your life, you make it of better quality and deeper meaning,” he said.
But Putin’s absence from the ice hockey gala game has fueled speculation about the health of the Russian leader, who has reportedly deteriorated since his invasion of Ukraine.
Vladimir Putin has missed the annual ice hockey game, where he usually stars (pictured in 2021), raising new concerns about his health amid persistent rumors that the Russian strongman has multiple medical problems.
Putin grabbed the arm of his chair earlier this year during a meeting with Alexander Lukashenko after images showed his arm was shaking
Two years before he decided to invade Ukraine, rumors began to circulate about Putin’s health, including suggestions that he had undergone cancer surgery.
Valery Solovei, a political analyst and prominent critic of Putin, began spreading the rumor in late 2020, also suggesting that he was suffering from Parkinson’s.
The rumors gained such traction that the Kremlin was forced to go public and deny them, with Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov insisting his boss was in “excellent health” and any rumor to the contrary “complete nonsense.” used to be.
But the whispers have persisted and have intensified since the start of the war in Ukraine, with critics suggesting Putin looks unwell on TV appearances and noticeably swollen around his face.
Leaked images of a meeting with Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko in the early stages of the war also appeared to show pronounced arm and leg tremors.
Shaking is one of the main symptoms of Parkinson’s – a condition that Hitler is said to have suffered towards the end of World War II.
As Putin sat down with Lukashenko, he gripped the arm of his chair — perhaps in an attempt to tremble even more.
Putin also grabbed the edge of a table during a recent meeting with his defense chief, perhaps to hide the signs of a tremor
He then took a similar pose — this time clutching the edge of a table — meeting Defense Secretary Sergei Shoigu a few weeks later.
Then came an Easter Sunday mass with the Russian leader making unusual fidgeting movements with his lips as he listened to the service.
He was seen making the same lip movements after Monday’s Victory Day parade as he walked with Shoigu to lay a wreath. During the parade, Putin was also seen limping and with a blanket over his lap as he sat down.
Putin’s bloated face has led to claims that he is undergoing steroid treatment, while reports have suggested that Putin is “constantly” accompanied by a doctor who specializes in thyroid cancer.
Surgeon Yevgeny Selivanov, of the Central Clinical Hospital in Moscow, has flown to the Russian leader no fewer than 35 times in Sochi, his favorite residence on the Black Sea.
Vladimir Putin (center) watched part of Monday’s Victory Day parade in Moscow with a blanket draped over his lap, as geriatric war veterans sat naked around him
The respected doctor’s dissertation – which demonstrates his medical expertise – was entitled: ‘Properties of diagnostics and surgical treatment of elderly and senile patients with thyroid cancer’.
Another reason Putin could have chosen to be absent from the ice hockey game could be safety. Two days ago, a 77-plane flypast was canceled in Red Square over concerns about an “air strike” during the annual Victory Day parade.
Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the president will not participate in the 2022 ice hockey festival.
Instead, Putin said in a video message: “I wish you the best of luck in your ice fights and all the best.
“And as they say, may the best man win.”
While Putin was “expected” to participate, he instead sent a video message (pictured) wishing the participants “good luck in their ice battles” — despite the president’s mention of Sochi’s Black Sea report, where the match will take place
A Moscow source said: ‘This was always a fixed date in his calendar. Something must be wrong for him not to show up.’
Regional Kuban News had reported: “It was expected that Vladimir Putin would also play for Legends of Hockey, but in early May, the press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation, Dmitry Peskov, announced that the head of state was not participating in the game.
“It is only the second time in gala history since 2012 that the president has missed this match.
“In 2013, he held a symbolic face-off and watched the game from the stands.”
At the time, this was also attributed to health problems.
Source: New feed