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- Alina Kabaeva, Putin’s rumored girlfriend, compared Russian media to a rifle and called it a “military weapon.”
- A video of Kabaeva’s speech at a recent National Media Group anniversary event was posted on Twitter Monday.
- Kabaeva — a former gymnast and politician — has allegedly been with Putin for nearly 15 years. Both have denied the relationship.
Russian President Vladimir Putin’s rumored girlfriend Alina Kabaeva compared Russian media outlets to a rifle and called it a “military weapon” in a recent — and rare — speech.
—Anton Gerashchenko (@Gerashchenko_en) February 6, 2023
According to Insider’s translation of the video, Alina Kabaeva said Russian media is “like a military weapon and in its significance is in no way inferior to the Kalashnikov assault rifle. And war correspondents know about it. Keep up the good work!”
According to Newsweek, Kabaeva’s speech was from a National Media Group anniversary event. She has been the chair of the NMG’s Board of Directors since 2014.
During the event, Kabaeva asked NMG to “wish success to each one of us and all of us together” in their work.
Prior to her time at NMG, Kabaeva was a rhythmic gymnast and won 2 Olympic medals, 14 World Championship medals, and 21 European Championship medals.
According to NPR, she tested positive for a banned substance at the Goodwill Games in Australia in 2001. After retiring from gymnastics in 2007, Kabaeva served in Russia’s parliament until starting at NMG.
Insider previously reported that Kabaeva and Putin’s alleged relationship dates back nearly 15 years. Putin and Kabaeva have long denied the rumors, including reports that the couple have a child.
Her speech was held weeks before the 1-year anniversary of Russia’s unprovoked invasion Ukraine.
Translations by Oleksandr Vynogradov