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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov denied reports that Russian President Vladimir Putin is seriously ill on Sunday as rumors about the leader’s health continue to spread.
Lavrov made the statement to the French outlet TF1 on Sunday. Rumors about the Russian leader’s health have swirled since Russia began its invasion of Ukraine in late February.
“You know, President Putin appears in public every day. You can see him on the screens, read his speeches, listen to his speeches,” Lavrov said. “I don’t think sane people can discern any sort of symptom of disease in this man.”
Lavrov’s statement comes after a recording reportedly revealed a Kremlin-aligned Russian oligarch stating that Putin was seriously ill with “blood cancer.”
The Kremlin has had to deny reports of Putin’s declining health multiple times this year. Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated in March that Putin’s mental and physical state were both “normal.”
While there has been little concrete evidence that Putin’s health is struggling, an investigation by the Russian outer Proekt found that the leader regularly travels with an entourage of roughly 60 doctors, and that he suffers from back pain.
Putin, 69, has never publicly addressed his health rumors, but he has for years sought to present himself as a sportsman and outdoorsman.