Putin Is ‘Completely Too Wholesome,’ C.I.A. Director Says

Putin Is ‘Completely Too Wholesome,’ C.I.A. Director Says

Western intelligence officers, in addition to the Kremlin, this week pushed aside longstanding rumors that Vladimir V. Putin, the 69-year-old Russian president, is ill.

Mr. Putin coughed right through a speech in Moscow on Wednesday, main observers to lift considerations about his well being. His deliberate assembly that day with officers from South Ossetia was once canceled, fueling hypothesis that he was once unwell. In June, when a video launched by way of state media confirmed him greedy a desk tightly, for a second too lengthy, many on social media have been satisfied that his well being was once declining.

“There are many rumors about President Putin’s well being and so far as we will be able to inform he’s completely too wholesome,” William J. Burns, director of the C.I.A., mentioned on the Aspen Safety Discussion board in Colorado on Wednesday.

Richard Moore, the pinnacle of MI6, the British international intelligence carrier, mentioned he agreed with the C.I.A. director’s evaluate: “There is not any proof that Putin is affected by severe sickness.”

The Kremlin additionally denounced the rumors on Wednesday as “not anything however fakes.”

Dmitri S. Peskov, the Kremlin’s spokesman, informed newshounds that Mr. Putin was once in just right well being and blamed “knowledge consultants” from Ukraine, the USA and Britain for spreading rumors on the contrary.

Mr. Putin’s well being was once the topic of conjecture even ahead of Russia invaded Ukraine in February. Unconfirmed rumors through the years have identified the president — whose non-public existence is in large part shrouded in secrecy — with most cancers, Parkinson’s illness, dementia and paranoia.

The warfare has additionally spurred rumors in regards to the well being of President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine.

On Thursday, a Ukrainian radio station broadcast a number of statements claiming that Mr. Zelensky, 44, was once in in depth care and that Ruslan Stefanchuk, the speaker of the Ukrainian parliament, had assumed the presidency.

The homeowners of the radio station later introduced that the station were hacked.

Mr. Zelensky addressed the rumor in a video speech, calling it faux information unfold by way of Russia. He mentioned he was once talking from his place of job and had by no means felt more potent.

“And, with all due appreciate to previous age, 44 isn’t 70,” Mr. Zelensky mentioned. Mr. Putin will flip 70 in October.

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