The Kremlin has denied Russia President Vladimir Putin is suffering from health problems after he was shown having a coughing fit during a televised online conference.
Officials said Putin was "absolutely fine" and the incident was "normal."
While speaking to officials in a conference discussing the country's finances and response to the pandemic, the 68-year-old president was shown struggling to finish his sentences. Putin violently coughed for several seconds. The coughing fit was allegedly later edited out of a video released by the president's office.
State news agency TASS reported Thursday it had asked the Kremlin about the incident and the state of Putin's health. The president's office said Putin was fine and that he was not infected with the coronavirus. U.S. President Donald Trump and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson have both contracted the virus.
Putin has remained in relative isolation since he came into contact with infected doctors in Moscow earlier in the year. Russia Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin and spokesman and adviser Dmitry Peskov were confirmed to have contracted the virus back in May.
Earlier in the month, rumors of Putin's plan to step down as president emerged after sources claimed he might be suffering from Parkinson's disease. Footage of him struggling to hold a cup and his hand shaking further fueled rumors.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov dismissed the reports saying they were "absolute nonsense."
It isn't known if Putin has been given the country's vaccine candidate but he has confirmed that his 34-year-old daughter Katerina had been injected with the Sputnik V treatment.
On Tuesday, its manufacturers submitted a certification request to the World Health Organization for its international use.
On Wednesday, officials said that the country had recorded its highest daily COVID deaths at 456. This brought its deaths to 34,387.