Ambassadors of more than 20 countries were invited to the Kremlin on Tuesday to hand over their credentials to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
However, the ceremony was not in person. From the podium – more than 20 meters away from the ambassadors – the Russian President expressed his regret at the deterioration of relations between Russia and Western countries after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Pictures from the ceremony show foreign ambassadors standing in a row at a good distance from the podium. The Russian president is said to have cited “health reasons” as the reason.
– Unfortunately, for health reasons, we can no longer talk together and socialize. “I hope that better times will come, not only in politics, but also in the health care system, and that we will be able to do this,” he added. Sky News.
For more than three years, Putin has demanded that everyone who meets him be quarantined for two weeks beforehand. But in November, his number of days should have been reduced to five.
The exception is if the guest stays between three and five meters from Putin. And then, according to the Moscow Times, tests alone are enough.
The reason Putin is easing up now is said to be the presidential election in 2024, where he is expected to run.
The Russian president has been concerned about Corona since 2020. When French President Emmanuel Macron visited Russia before invading Ukraine in 2022, a photo of the two heads of state, separated by a six-meter table, spread around the world.
The reason is said to be that the French president did not undergo a Corona test when he arrived in the Kremlin.
Contrary to rumours
Speculation about Putin’s health has circulated for years. The Kremlin has denied several times, including in October, that he is ill.
On several occasions, there were allegations of the use of doubles for the Russian president, something the Kremlin described as “absurd.”
Among other things, rumors began to spread when Putin traveled to Ukraine and Kherson to visit Russian-occupied war zones. It was then claimed that Putin was represented by a “surrogate”.
– He was not the real Putin, said the Secretary of the Ukrainian National Security Council, Oleksiy Danilov.
No evidence has been found that Putin uses lookalikes.
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