It has been nearly two weeks since an apparent source claiming to be from Russian President Vladimir Putin's inner-circle at the Kremlin stated that the leader of Russia had died from a heart attack.
Taking to the Telegram channel General SVR, the source has been the centre of claims about Putin's health since Russian first invading neighbouring Ukraine nearly two years ago. For the most part, the Kremlin has refused to comment on the claims . . . but the last two weeks has seen two denials come from Putin's official spokesman Dmitry Peskov, who claimed that it was an “absurd information canard” on two occasions.
He said: “This belongs to the category of absurd information hoaxes that a whole series of media discuss with enviable tenacity – this evokes nothing but a smile.” So what makes these claims different to the last two years where the source has stated that Putin has had anything from cancer to multiple-sclerosis to dementia – all of which elicited silence from the Kremlin?
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The detail which the source has gone into this time could be a factor, with them claiming It started on October 22, claiming that he as now on life support, in a “stable but serious” condition, with doctors “not optimistic” after already trying to “resuscitate” him.
He was then allegedly moved to his official Valdai residence's intensive care unit. Just two days later, he was now lying in a “room equipped at an intensive care ward in his residence, connected to equipment that monitors his vital parameters” – this saw the first Kremlin denial.
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They said: "Against this background, people privy to the current situation from the President's inner circle held consultations on Monday with representatives of several elite groups, trying to determine the possibility of consolidating into the prototype of a certain 'Politburo' headed by the current Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation, Nikolai Patrushev and control over Putin’s double, who will 'temporarily' represent the president.”
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Just three days later, on October 27, it was then claimed that he had died – and that doctors were “blocked in” with the corpse, leading to a second denial from Peskov. The source went on to claim that the alleged death gave his team a huge problem as the use of a body double could now be seen as a “coup d'etat”, but they plodded on and most of the claims since then have been about the body double.
No word on the fate of the corpse has been given, and no further denials have been made, although it has been muted that many world leaders are aware of the death, which has since been officially made into a “state secret” – hence the silence. And the one person not yet commenting on them – despite many public appearances by what many assume is now a body double – is Russian President Vladimir Putin himself.
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