Vladimir Putin has been described as displaying an increasing amount of paranoia after an unusually staged appearance at a funeral this week. President Putin attended the funeral of former strongman Murtaza Rakhimov, who served as the first president of the oil-rich Russian republic Bashkortostan. However, the funeral visit caused a stir on social media after Russian officials cleared the room of grieving relatives and armed guards before President Putin’s appearance.
He was seen briefly laying flowers by the coffin of the 88-year-old deceased dictator by himself before abruptly leaving.
Konstantin Sonin, a University of Chicago Professor, remarked: “Another episode of Putin’s paranoia.
“A memorial service for a regional strongman, former Bashkortostan leader Murtaza Rakhimov.
“For Putin, they removed all honor guards, relatives, and other visitors.”
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@GlasnostGone tweeted: “Putin’s one scared little Russian.
“At the funeral of Murtaza Rakhimov, he deliberately avoided the crowded ceremony, which included his worst fear – soldiers with guns.
@AlexandruC4 added: “New creepy scene from lonely Putin: he went to pay his respects to former Bashkortostan leader Murtaza Rakhimov.
“Family members and other attendants were removed so he can be alone.”
The appearance follows President Putin’s similarly lonely appearance at Christmas when he was filmed attending an Orthodox church service by himself inside a Kremlin cathedral.
Analysts thought the fear of assassination linked to the war in Ukraine may have led to President Putin avoiding his usual appearance at a crowded gathering outside the capital.
Russian commanders left troops as “sitting ducks” in a vocational school in Makiivka vulnerable to a Ukrainian attack.
The Kremlin leader’s former aide and speechwriter Abbas Gallyamov said the Russian leader should have offered condolences to the families instead of visiting Ufa.
He posted: “It would make sense for Putin to participate in the funerals of the mobilised who died in Makiivka.
“Or those whose bodies are strewn across the approaches to Bakhmut.
“But, no, he preferred to fly to Ufa for the farewell ceremony for the deceased…dictator. Soul mates.”