Kremlin spokesman says President Vladimir Putin is absolutely fine dismisses Western news reports of him gravely ill and using body doubles at state events
Russian President Vladimir Putin has no body doubles, contrary to reports in some Western media outlets, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said. He also dismissed rumors that the president is seriously ill.
Speaking to the Russian media on Tuesday, Peskov insisted: “No. There are no body doubles… This belongs to the category of absurd information hogwash, which is discussed with enviable persistence by a number of media outlets.” He added that such claims “give [everyone in the Kremlin] nothing but a smile.”
He also dismissed as fake reports that have recently emerged in the Western media, suggesting that the Russian head of state is having heart problems.
“He is absolutely fine,” Peskov assured reporters.
On Tuesday, The Mirror newspaper in Britain ran an article, citing an anonymous Russian Telegram channel called General SVR, which alleged that President Putin had suffered a cardiac arrest and had to be resuscitated on Sunday. The paper also repeated the claim that the Kremlin uses body doubles for some of Putin’s public appearances, including foreign visits.
Meeting with Deputy Prime Minister – Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov Tue Oct 24
The Mirror did note, however, that the Telegram channel it had quoted “never posts any solid proof behind such claims.”
The newspaper went on to cite a recent Japanese TV report, which also alleged that the Russian president has doppelgangers, having analyzed his face, walk and voice in multiple appearances with the help of artificial intelligence. The head of Ukraine’s intelligence service, Kirill Budanov, has made similar claims in recent months.
Several other Western media outlets have repeatedly reported that the Russian head of state is seriously ill, or even terminally ill with some form of cancer.
Last November, AP and a number of other Western outlets alleged that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had been hospitalized after his arrival at the G20 summit on the Indonesia island of Bali.
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova was quick to share a video clip of herself with the minister, who appeared to be in good health. She added that “[we] just couldn’t believe our eyes” after seeing the fake reports in the media.