The long standing President of Russia, Vladimir Putin, has made another quite unusual public appearance this week, by holidaying in the wilderness of Siberia with his defense minister Sergei Shoigu. The spritely 68 year old looked young for his years as the pair undertook various outdoor activities such as fishing, hiking and walking in the great outdoors.
The 20 pictures published on the Kremlin’s website, showed the revered head of state and his defence buddy in various camouflage clothing, looking healthy and relaxed. According to the Kremlin, Putin had been working in the Far East of Russia in early September, and had taken a few days off as a stopover in Siberia as part of his journey back to the capital, Moscow.
The president was shown successfully capturing a large Pike fish, a staple fixture in Siberia’s waters this time of year. Later on the pair were pictured outside a tent and in front of a (bizarrely) fake fire. The purpose of the photos seems to be to reinforce Putin’s public image as a macho man amongst the Russian public. In previous candid photoshoots released by the Kremlin, Putin has been seen riding horses bare chested and wearing sunglasses, hunting with a rifle, and even flying a fighter jet. The manly image has been a hit so far with the Russian masses.
September is an excellent time for the president to visit Siberia, with temperature highs of 8°C (25°F), and lows of -4°C (46°F). The purpose of the photos is arguably to also show Putin as a man that holidays at home and is a champion of both Russian culture, as well as its natural beauty.
Putin has been President of Russia on and off since the turn of the millennium. His latest stint as the President began back in May 2012, and he will celebrate the ten year anniversary of this initial term next year in 2022.