VLADIMIR Putin attended an Orthodox Easter service surrounded by security after the tyrant's supposed cancer battle was revealed in a US intelligence leak.
Top-secret documents spilled a number of damaging revelations – including a rumour Putin, 70, is receiving chemotherapy treatment.
But ignoring the classified document leak, Putin on Sunday was seen attending Moscow’s largest cathedral, Christ the Saviour, to mark Orthodox Easter.
The paranoid tyrant went to church flanked by an army of security operatives amid his fear of an assassin’s bullet.
Extraordinary footage showed the country’s top churchman Patriarch Kirill, 76, entering the midnight service surrounded by dozens of suited security operatives mostly in red ties.
They were believed to be crack FSO Federal Protection Service guards who are routinely armed and whose task is to keep Putin and other top officials safe.
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The stern-faced agents appeared to be in place to protect Putin from worshippers who underwent intense security checks before being allowed into the cathedral.
Traffic was restricted in central Moscow hours before the service began.
Putin admitted that the second Orthodox Easter of his war with Ukraine came at a time of “serious challenges”.
He was accompanied at the ceremony by Moscow mayor Sergey Sobyanin, a close ally.
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Kirill gave a sermon which gave his church’s blessing to aggressor Putin’s invasion of Ukraine – telling the dictator that the sovereign land he has invaded is traditional Russian territory.
He said: “And today I am addressing both Russians and Ukrainians. I especially appeal to those who, against their will, were involved in this conflict.
“We must do everything by the power of our prayers and our good deeds to stop this conflict as quickly as possible, so that peace and a common good life, fraternal relations once again unite our peoples firmly and firmly, who were the one people of united Rus.
“Today, this will be my special prayer, and I would ask you all to join this prayer so that the Lord blesses the Russian land. "
Putin was seen crossing himself several times during the ceremony, known as the Divine Liturgy.
Concern over Putin’s security is acute in Russia amid the war against Ukraine.
Rumours that the Russian despot is suffering from various illnesses have rumbled on for months.
Eyebrows have been raised repeatedly over his use of absurdly long tables and shaking hands.
Bombshell spy documents leaked to The Sun previously appeared to confirm the dictator has pancreatic cancer and early-stage Parkinson's disease.
The leaked Pentagon memo meanwhile described an alleged plot to sabotage Putin – hinged on the president being incapacitated while receiving chemotherapy treatment.
Jack Teixeira, a 21-year-old US airman who dubbed himself Jack the Dripper, was arrested by FBI agents on Thursday over the leak.
Last year, Russia was accused of faking Putin's Easter church service appearance by using digitally altered pictures from the previous year's event.
Online sleuths claimed the images from 2021 were virtually identical and were re-issued to hide the tyrant's failing health.
Pictures and video released by the Kremlin appeared to show the president holding a candle during midnight mass for Orthodox Easter.
As at 2021's Easter mass, Putin was standing to the side of the main altar at Moscow's Christ the Saviour Cathedral alongside the city's mayor Sergei Sobyanin.
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Both men were also wearing extremely similar clothes.
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