Russia's Foreign Minister Lavrov denies speculation that Putin might be ill

As Russian President Vladimir Putin totters, shaking, bloated, and apparently bewildered from one photo-call to another, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has denied speculation that Putin might be ill.

In an interview with French TV, Lavrov said the Russian leader appears in public every day, and no sane person would see any signs of an ailment.

There has been increasing unconfirmed media speculation that Putin, who turns 70 this year, may be suffering from ill health, possibly cancer, possibly Parkinson's disease.

The interview came as Russia continues its advance in Ukraine's Donbas region.

Mr Lavrov said the "liberation" of the eastern region was an "unconditional priority" and that that Russia is fighting a "neo-Nazi regime".

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