Today, the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, turned 69 years old. As his press secretary, Dmitry Peskov, noted, despite his birthday, Putin has a lot of work for today and only in the evening he can celebrate the special day with his family and friends.
As noted, this is not the first birthday that the Russian leader spends in his office. In 2020, he devoted the first half of his day to the internal agenda and more than a dozen of telephone conversations. Though the rest of the day was traditionally spent with family and friends.
No time to relax – busy!
In 2013, the head of state celebrated his birthday at the APEC summit in Bali. The then president of Indonesia, Susilo Bambang, sang Putin the “Happy Birthday to You” song accompanying himself on guitar, the Prime Minister of Japan presented Putin with sake, and the Chinese leader gave him a cake.
In 2009, on his birthday, Putin held a meeting with leading Russian writers at the Pushkin State Museum in Moscow. In 2005, Putin met with the leaders of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, and also held talks with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder. In 2002, the head of state celebrated his birthday in Chisinau, where he took part in the CIS summit, and then went to Moscow and gave a dinner for members of the government.
In addition, being a native of Leningrad, Putin likes to spend his special day in St. Petersburg or the Leningrad region as well. For example, in 2012, he celebrated his birthday there with his family and friends, and in 2008 he attended a session of the Interpol General Assembly and a presentation of a film about judo there. In 2000, he held a business meeting with the President of the World Bank, James Wolfensohn, there and in 2003 he met the elected governor of the city, Valentina Matvienko, and artists.
However, in 2014, the President decided to take a day off and go to the Siberian taiga to spend some time in nature. Then he walked almost 9 kilometres through the mountains. In 2019, according to Peskov, the President again spent his birthday with his close people.
Most important presents Putin keeps at home
One of the most unusual gifts that Vladimir Putin received on his birthday was a two-month-old Ussuri tiger cub, then transferred to the Gelendzhik Safari Park, a copy of Monomakh’s hat, and a crystal crocodile. According to Peskov, traditionally most of the presents are sent to the presidential library and stored there, though some of the gifts from his closest friends are stored at home.
In 2017, the former Italian leader, Silvio Berlusconi, flew to Sochi for Putin’s birthday with an embroidered coverlet depicting the handshake of the two presidents in front of St. Basil’s Cathedral and the Colosseum.
In addition, horse races are held in Chechnya for Putin’s birthday, the winners of which receive cars as prizes. It is specified that such events are traditionally arranged there in honour of significant events related to any victories or achievements, or to pay tribute to a particular person.
Source: RIA Novosti