News Column

Putin in Good Health, Kremlin Says

Nov. 30, 2012

Kremlin officials on Friday again rejected rumours that President Vladimir Putin is suffering from health problems, pointing out plans for a trip to Turkey next week.

"Vladimir Vladimirovich is in good physical shape. People should not be worried," Sergei Ivanov, the head of the president's office, said from Vienna in comments reported by the Interfax news agency.

The Kremlin also denied reports out of Tokyo, which said Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda had delayed a planned trip to Russia due to concerns about Putin's health.

Speculation has swirled about the 60-year-old president in recent months, with media reports of cancelled trips to Pakistan and eastern Russia. The scheduled trip to Turkey on Monday will be his first trip abroad in months.

Reports have ruminated on a possible injury, sustained during a sporting activity or while landing an ultralight aircraft while flying with geese.

Russian media also recently reported an interview wherein Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko speaks about Putin injuring himself while practising judo.

During a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Moscow two weeks ago, Putin went against established practice and insisted that he be seated during the press conference.

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has insisted for weeks that the president is working as normal.

On Friday, Putin reportedly met members of the legislature, or Duma, at his residence in Moscow. But, in photos of the event released by the Kremlin, Putin only appears sitting.

Source: Copyright 2012 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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