Putin says “he who said it, did it” after Biden calls Russian president a “killer”
The Kremlin is trying to dispel rumors that the Russian president may be the father of twins, whom gymnast Alina Kabaeva gave birth to in May.
Usually the birth of twins is a reason for the celebration, and if one of the parents is the head of state, and the other is a prominent public figure, then the press will be filled with their photos. However, Russia seems to have become an exception to this rule: the discussion in the media of the events of Vladimir Putin's personal life is strictly prohibited here..
Rumors have been circulating in Moscow in recent days that the alleged "first lady" of Russia, Olympic champion in rhythmic gymnastics Alina Kabaeva, gave birth to twins in May. For the first time, rumors of a secret connection between Kabaeva and Putin appeared back in 2008, when Kabaeva gave birth to a daughter in a private Swiss clinic, which the Italian politician Silvio Berlusconi allegedly recommended to her..
Then, as now, the Kremlin stopped a number of publications about the birth of Kabaeva. Putin, who fiercely guards the secrecy of his personal life (perhaps this is a habit since his work in the KGB), has always denied reports of his connection with the gymnast, who in 2014 became the chairman of the board of directors of the holding "National Media Group".
In 2008, answering a question from a journalist of Nezavisimaya Gazeta about rumors about his upcoming wedding with Kabaeva, Putin said: "I have always treated badly those who, with some kind of flu-like nose and with their erotic fantasies, climb into someone else's life.".
In 2013, the Russian president announced his divorce from his wife Lyudmila Shkrebneva. The marriage lasted 30 years, during which time the Putin had two daughters. The Putin reported the news in an interview with Russia-24 during the intermission at a ballet show at the State Kremlin Palace, calling the decision to divorce "common." Shkrebneva subsequently married.
Sources in several Russian media outlets confirm that the Kremlin promptly reacted to the appearance of reports about the next birth of Kabaeva, once again demonstrating a tough approach to publications that publish reports about the unofficial life of the president. In 2016, three editors of the Russian media group RBC were fired after publishing material about assets that belong to Putin..
The website of the Moskovsky Komsomolets newspaper, which belongs to the oligarch Arkady Rotenberg, who is a member of Vladimir Putin's "inner circle", published a note about Alina Kabaeva's alleged birth. Shortly thereafter, the publication disappeared from the newspaper's website. Representatives of the Russian authorities declined to comment on this post..
However, after this, messages about the birth of twins began to appear on many news sites – such a publication appeared on dni.ru under the headline "Alina Kabaeva, who gave birth to twins, disappeared."
The show business news site Dom2Life, owned by another oligarch from Putin's entourage, Alexander Karmanov, first reported about Kabaeva's birth on May 12, the day of her 36th birthday..
According to Russian journalist Sergei Kanev, Kabaeva gave birth to twins by caesarean section at the Academician Kulakov Scientific Center for Obstetrics, Gynecology and Perinatology, where on this occasion a whole floor was specially vacated to serve VIP clients. In an interview with the British Daily Mail, Kanev said that the operation was carried out with the participation of an Italian doctor..
Russian journalists fear that the state will only intensify efforts in the future to limit the independence of news outlets. In March, Putin signed new laws against the spread of "fake news" and "disrespect for the state." Violators face fines and even jail time. Experts warn that the wording of the laws will bring to justice those Russian journalists who are still trying to convey the truth to their audiences..