The Kremlin said Thursday that Russian President Vladimir Putin is in good health, dismissing rumors that the leader was unwell as completely unfounded.
“Everything is fine with his health,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.
Scrutiny over the 69-year-old Putin’s health has intensified since he launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February.
“Ukrainian, American and British information ‘specialists’ have been throwing out various fakes about the state of the president’s health in recent months. These are nothing but fakes,” Peskov added.
After Putin was seen coughing at a forum on Wednesday, he said he had caught a slight cold while sitting under an air conditioner during his visit to Iran earlier this week.
"It was very hot in Tehran yesterday… The air conditioning was very strong there. So I apologize," the president said.
A video of Putin disembarking from his plane upon arrival in Tehran also prompted speculation that he was unsteady on his feet.
CIA Director William Burns, when asked about the issue during a security forum in the United States on Wednesday, said that Putin was "entirely too healthy."
Russia’s president has frequently been in public view since the start of the war in Ukraine on Feb. 24, maintaining a full schedule of meetings and talks, including a number of foreign trips within the past month.