Based on Recent Appearances, Putin’s Health is Subject of Rumor

Cancer has been among a number of armchair diagnoses of Putin that have emerged in the last few weeks, which include dementia and Parkinson’s Disease.

A clip of the Russian leader holding the corner of a table with his right hand throughout a meeting with his defense minister Sergei Shoigu added to the speculation.

A recent report by Russian investigative outlet The Project said the Russian president had been examined by oncologist Evgeny Selivanov 35 times in the last few years. (Newsweek)

The rumours appear to have originated with the hugely popular Russian Telegram channel General SVR, which claimed that Mr Putin’s doctors have warned him the surgery might incapacitate him for “a short time”, and that during this period the president will briefly hand over the reins of power to an aide.

There has been no official confirmation regarding Mr Putin’s alleged ill health — the Kremlin has not commented on the reports, either to confirm or deny them — but recent videos and pictures showing him shaky, fidgeting and puffy-looking have fuelled speculation that the 69-year-old may be suffering from one of a number of conditions including dementia, Parkinson’s or cancer.

Russia observers are divided on how much attention to pay to the health rumours, with some even suggesting it could be a deliberate ploy from the Kremlin — given how tightly Russia controls any media output relating to the president. (The Independent)

King’s College London Director of Russia Institute Dr. Sam Greene says Russian President Vladimir Putin appears increasingly isolated and inscrutable, but hasn’t always been this way.