Vladimir Putin met with Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov in Moscow today, just days after the ruthless warlord posted a video of his son beating a Ukrainian being held on suspicion of burning the Koran.
Kadyrov, who was reported to be ‘critically ill’ and fighting for his life in a coma by Ukrainian intelligence just a few days ago, was pictured grinning as he met with his close ally Putin in the Russian capital this afternoon.
The meeting comes three days after Kadyrov, 46, praised his 15-year-old son for beating up a prisoner accused of burning the Koran, an incident on which the Kremlin refused to comment.
Adam Kadyrov, 15, was caught on tape pulverising Nikita Zhuravel, 19, a native Ukrainian, who was held in a detention cell for allegedly setting a copy of Islam’s holy book alight.
While the beating has been discussed openly in Russian media for a month, video of the attack was shared by the brutal Chechen warlord on Monday, who said he was ‘proud’ of his teenage son for carrying out the horrific attack.
Vladimir Putin met with Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov (pictured together) in Moscow today
The Chechen leader was pictured grinning in a public appearance just days after Ukrainian intelligence reported he was in a coma
The meeting with Putin also comes soon after he posted a video of his son beating a Ukrainian being held on suspicion of burning the Koran
Father-of-14 Kadyrov said on his social media channels: ‘There are still arguments online about the fact that [my son] Adam Kadyrov beat up the Holy Koran burner Nikita Zhuravel, an accomplice of the Ukrainian security services.
‘Did it happen or not? He beat him and did the right thing.
‘Moreover, I believe that anyone who infringes on any Holy Scripture, including those who demonstratively burn it and offend tens of millions of citizens of our large country, should be severely punished.
‘Our country has a unique law protecting the Holy Scriptures, signed by the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin.
‘Religious values of the citizens of the country are protected by the state at the highest level. And provocateurs cannot take that away.
‘Without exaggeration, yes, I am proud of Adam’s action.
‘He has always been distinguished by his desire to grow up not amongst his peers but amongst his elders, thus developing adult ideals of honour, dignity and defending his religion.
‘I respect his choice.’
A short video clip posted by TV reporter Pavel Zarubin showed Putin and Kadyrov exchanging opening remarks today, with no reference to the beating episode that drew condemnation even from some pro-Kremlin hardliners.
Putin said that there was a ‘positive dynamic’ in Chechnya, largely thanks to Kadyrov and his team. Kadyrov was also shown handing him some papers from a file.
Adam Kadyrov is one of the ruthless warlord’s 14 children. They are pictured together above
Russian tyrant Vladimir Putin (pictured, right) has backed Kadyrov for several years and they are close allies
Less than a fortnight ago, Ukrainian military intelligence claimed that the Chechen warlord was in a coma and that kidney doctors had been rushed from Moscow to his regional capital Grozny to treat him.
‘Indeed, there is information that the war criminal Kadyrov is in a serious condition,’ said Andrey Yusov, spokesman for the GUR military intelligence.
‘We can confirm that he has had a severe relapse and has been in critical condition for several days.’
Earlier this year there were claims of Kadyrov health problems, with observers noting a rapid weight gain and swollen face.
In photos with Putin today, while his face still looked bloated, the warlord did not show any visible signs of being in a ‘serious condition’ – which he has rejected himself.
The health Kadyrov – who has sent tens of thousands of fighters to Putin’s war in Ukraine – is the subject of deep speculation in Russia amid claims he is terminally ill.
He is believed to have serious kidney problems.
In one meeting with Putin earlier this year he appeared breathless, bloated and quivering as he read awkwardly from a large font as he reported to Putin.
Ramzan Kadyrov (pictured) released a nearly unintelligible video of himself walking through a park seemingly trying to confirm he was healthy
In March after a spate of speculation, Kadyrov insisted he was ‘healthy and full of energy’ and regularly checked by doctors.
The same month Putin took the unusual step of summoning his eldest son Akhmat, 17, for a one-to-one meeting in the Kremlin.
Ramzan Kadyrov inherited the leadership of the region from his assassinated father.
In early July amid another swirl of health rumours, Kadyrov in a rambling post said he had recorded a film to prove was not dead.
‘We are still alive somehow,’ he said. ‘Anyway, we don’t want to live long. We will live a short but decent life.’
Exiled Chechen opposition politician Tumso Abdurakhmanov said at the time: ‘His kidneys have completely failed, and dialysis does not help.’
Kadyrov, a father of at least 14 children, is a colonel-general in Putin’s national guard.
The decision to share the video of his son beating up the Ukrainian prisoner sparked a backlash and is currently under investigation by Russia’s Investigative Committee.
TV star Ksenia Sobchak complained to the head of the Russian Investigative Committee Alexander Bastrykin – a former Putin classmate – over the post.
‘This is hell. This is the head of the Republic [of Chechnya].
‘This is disrespect for the laws of our country,’ she said.
‘Adam Kadyrov’s actions must be investigated, they must be given a legal assessment in accordance with the Criminal Code of Russia, not the laws of sharia or Ramzan Kadyrov.
‘This young man should not get away with it, how much longer can he mock the whole of Russia and openly spit in the face of the entire law enforcement system?’
After rumours swirled around about Kadyrov being in a coma, the bloodthirsty leader posted a video to his Telegram channel seemingly to show that he was not in a coma.
Kadyrov, who has frequently been accused of being involved in the kidnapping, assassination, and torture of human rights activists, critics, and their relatives, took two videos of himself walking down a path in an unknown park.
While he could be heard speaking in both videos, he was not coherently speaking.
He said ‘this is how things are…’ before trailing off and mumbling incoherently about the rain and the distance he has left to walk, before bizarrely ending the video by saying ‘so do some sport!’
He could also be heard breathing heavily while going on a gentle stroll through the park.