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Vladimir Putin bares it all in Siberia

Last updated on: August 05, 2009 

Vladimir Putin bares it all in Siberia

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Not many prime ministers are known to flaunt their body; actually, not many are known for their physical fitness, either.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is clearly in a minority of one.

The 56-year-old showed off his toned torso as he indulged in a few outdoor pursuits in southern Siberia on Monday.

 


Image: Putin on vacation in southern Siberia
Photographs: www.premier.gov.ru
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A black belt in judo, Putin attributes his fitness to sports activities.  

The former Russian Sercret Service officer sported a large cross on a chain as he rode bare-chested through the rugged countryside.

He also showed off an impressive butterfly stroke during a brisk swim in a nearby lake in the mountains of Siberia's Tyva region.

Image: An impressive butterfly stroke

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Vladimir Putin bares it all in Siberia

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During his short visit to Tuva, a remote region with its own language, Putin also found time to go white-water rafting.

He is said to have spent the last few days on vacation taking in a bit of horse-riding, some fishing, and has even been spotted climbing trees.

Image: Soaking up the Siberian landscape

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Vladimir Putin bares it all in Siberia

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This is not the first time Putin has appeared topless in the press. He removed his shirt during a fishing expedition with Prince Albert of Monaco in the Siberian mountains two years ago.

Clearly believing in the credo 'if you have it, flaunt it', Putin -- then the Russian President -- had the images put up on his official web site as well, setting off debate if it was right for a head of state to show off his physical prowess.

Putin has always maintained an image of machismo. He has been shown on television driving a truck, on a submarine, co-piloting a fighter jet, and running a train.

Natural, perhaps, in a nation that adulates its Olympians and where sports is a byword for excellence. If only it was the same with India as well!


Image: Vladimir Putin fishes in the Khemchik River
Photographs: Ho New/Reuters
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