Special measures to protect the Russian president

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All steps Putin takes are monitored

Nothing unplanned happens in Vladimir Putin’s life.

All steps taken by the Russian President are monitored by security guards who accompany him 24 hours a day.

His meals are carefully prepared and everything he drinks is managed by his advisor.

Putin, once a spy on the Soviet intelligence agency KGB, is well aware of the dangers lurking around him, especially during the war.

The Ukrainian aggression also increases the security risks facing Putin.

So who is responsible for protecting the Russian President? What precautions are being taken for safety? As far as we know, the answers to these questions are:

Extensive protection team

Some of Russia’s many security services are specifically tasked with protecting the head of state and their families.

The Federal Security Service of the Russian President is subordinate to the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation, an FSO with roots in the KGB and responsible for protecting other senior officials such as Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin.

Security guards for this service wear black suits and headphones to monitor the president day and night.

According to Russian government media Russia Beyond, these guards are organized into four rings when taking on a bodyguard on an overseas trip.

The first ring has the closest personal protection guard.

In the second ring, there are guards who go unnoticed and mix with people. The third surrounds the crowd and prevents the invasion of suspects.

The fourth and final group consists of snipers located in nearby buildings.

A sniper on the Kremlin Wall in central Moscow.

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A sniper on the Kremlin Wall in central Moscow.

When Putin goes somewhere, these guards will accompany him.

“Putin doesn’t like helicopters. He travels through huge convoys such as many big black cars and pickup trucks, often accompanied by motorcycles,” said the director of the Mayak Intelligence Consulting Company, which works on Russian security. , Mark Galeotti said. BBC Mundo. When the convoy passes, all unmanned aerial vehicles that may be in the airspace will be blocked and traffic will stop.

The Russian Presidential Security Agency was founded by Putin six years ago and is supported by the “Russian National Guard” or Los Guvardia, a type of president called the “private army”.

Independent of the Russian army, Rosgvardia’s official duty is to defend the borders, fight terrorism and maintain order, but one of its most important tasks is actually to protect Putin.

“Everyone knows they are actually Putin’s escorts,” says Steven Holl, a scholar at the University of Bath, who specializes in Russia.

“The president is protected by both the National Guard and other security agencies.”

Putin's former bodyguard, Victor Zorotov

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Former Putin bodyguard Victor Zorotov leads the National Guard

Victor Zorotov, one of Putin’s former bodyguards and still head of the National Guard, has increased the number of security forces by nearly 400,000 in recent years.

“This is a huge number. The number of security personnel in a country like the United States is not even close to this number,” Hall says.

So what kind of protective measures are being taken?

It is difficult to know the extent of the measures taken to protect Putin, but the Kremlin and Russian security experts themselves provide some clues on this issue.

What is attracting attention is the issue of food.

According to Mark Galeotti, Putin, afraid of addiction, has a special taster who tastes everything he eats. “He’s more like a medieval ruler than a modern head of state,” says Galeotti.

Putin at the official dinner.

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Everything he eats and drinks is under the control of his team while the Russian President travels abroad.

“They buy all the food and drink they consume. For example, if you raise a glass of champagne at a formal supper, the glass of Putin is filled from the bottle that his team brought,” says Galeotti.

Russian expert Steven Holl states that Putin’s special guards personally monitor how food is cooked.

smartphone

Another precaution taken is that smartphones are not allowed to enter the Kremlin.

Putin himself says he is not using a smartphone.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov reiterates that Putin doesn’t use his cell phone “because he doesn’t have much time.”

But one of the reasons Putin doesn’t use this technology is that he doesn’t trust the internet at all.

Putin, who in the past called the Internet a “CIA project,” asked Russians not to use Google search engines because he thought American intelligence was monitoring everything.

“Putin doesn’t use the internet. He’s known to hate mobile phones. To be honest, he’s right. Mobile phones aren’t very secure,” says Galeotti.

Putin.

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Putin does not use a smartphone

Pandemic and quarantine day

Currently, the number of people who have access to Vladimir Putin is limited.

The few foreign leaders who met Putin are also careful to keep a certain distance between them.

I still keep in mind the pictures they took with French President Emmanuel Macron sitting at both ends of the long table.

Some of these measures were taken for a pandemic, further isolating Putin.

La reunion entre Putin y Macron

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Putin’s health is also a national security issue.

General James Clapper, one of the chief advisers of former US President Barack Obama, confirmed on the BBC Radio Today show that no one was approaching Putin.

“Putin lives in isolation from anyone else. The number of people around him has dropped significantly,” says Galeotti.

Vladimir Putin gets out of the car.

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“He no longer travels the country and rarely attends events. The guards are among the few people Putin has personal contact with,” Galeotti said.

Some intelligence experts say that extreme safety measures around Putin can be partially explained by “paranoia.”

According to some, Putin knows how important his own security is, based on his experience with the KGB.

In any case, both the circle of protection surrounding Putin and the isolation of the Russian president are increasing day by day, indicating that things are happening in the Kremlin as Putin wanted, Galeotti said. rice field.