A smiling Vladimir Putin was unable to stop his legs from twitching uncontrollably while he cracked a bizarre joke about having a “rubber bum” to Russian schoolchildren in the exclave territory of Kaliningrad.
The pupils who had been ordered to quarantine for 14 days before they could meet Putin, appeared baffled by the Russian president’s speech as he addressed them.
The 69-year-old Russian leader, made a rare public appearance in front of selected students aged between nine and 12.
While seated, his legs seemed to twitch continuously as he stated that Russia and Ukraine should be one country.
At one point, when a boy wearing a red military-type uniform asked Putin a question, and the president responded saying;
“You need to be motivated to reach your goal,” he says. “And, of course, hard work.
“All this together is very important. Working hard is a talent in itself. ”
He added: “It’s not just, excuse me, a rubber bum.
“It is a talent to force oneself to work, and to be able to do it productively.”
Despite Putin’s joke making him smile, his young audience remained stony-faced as they watched on.
Twitchy legs can be a symptom of Parkinson’s disease, which western media have been speculating Putin suffers from, but Russian media has continually maintained the leader is hale and hearty.
Putin’s speech came just hours after he was filmed walking awkwardly as he laid flowers on the open casket of former Soviet President Michael Gorbachev.
Putin's legs seem to be trying to twist while visiting Kaliningrad. What does his doctor say? https://t.co/oCRAIVDicK
— Jarek Jakimczyk (@jarek_jakimczyk) September 2, 2022