Paranoid Putin guards to disable St Petersburg internet during speech amid assassination


Paranoid security operatives guarding Vladimir Putin will disable mobile internet coverage in St Petersburg when the dictator today makes a speech in the city.

They fear the signals could be used to direct drones in assassination strikes on the warmonger, as has become a common tactic in Ukraine and – more recently – in attacks across the border in Russia.

Russia’s Ministry of Communications issued a disabling order to all mobile operators, according to sources of Faridaily news outlet run by journalist Farida Rustamova.

The move was ‘in order to prevent drones from attacking the forum venue during the plenary session of Putin’s traditional event’ – the annual St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, seen as Russia’s Davos equivalent.

Ukraine has launched multiple drone strikes on Russia in retaliation for endless missile attacks by Putin’s forces.

Paranoid security operatives guarding Vladimir Putin (pictured Thursday) will disable mobile internet coverage in St Petersburg when the dictator today makes a speech in the city

Paranoid security operatives guarding Vladimir Putin (pictured Thursday) will disable mobile internet coverage in St Petersburg when the dictator today makes a speech in the city

Strikes which hit the Kremlin on May 3 were blamed on Ukraine by the Russians.

This was portrayed by Moscow as a bid to ‘assassinate Putin’.

And in late May a drone strike came close to Putin’s palatial official residence Novo-Ogaryovo, near Moscow.

Footage showed sniffer dogs at today’s venue in St Petersburg, which is Putin’s home city, amid a huge security clampdown.

Putin is due to make a ‘lengthy speech’ followed by a discussion.

‘We can expect a very voluminous speech from the head of state,’ said his spokesman Dmitry Peskov.

‘Indeed a rather long speech was prepared.’

Most Western countries are boycotting the event which in previous years involved eminent foreign visitors.

Putin’s scheduled appearance comes at a time when there are rumours that he is increasingly using a body double for public events due to security fears or illness.

Swedish economist Anders Aslund – who has worked as an advisor to both the Russian and Ukrainians governments, told Die Welt: ‘Putin doesn’t dare go out in public. Whenever he appears, there are suspicions that he is a double.

‘Putin seems frightened. He has built bunkers at his three main residences. He travels the country by armoured train. And at each of his three main residences, he has built special stations for his personal security.

‘The level of paranoia seems almost pathological.’

Both Russia and Ukraine have deployed drones to carry out precision strikes against enemy units. The small, mobile devices are difficult to detect and can go deep behind enemy lines while allowing their operators to stay out of the firing line.

Both sides have used consumer quad-copters to scope out enemy positions and drop grenades down onto soldiers hiding in fox holes, or into armoured vehicles.

But consumer models tend to require connection to the internet to function, with operators using internet-connected devices and their GPS signals to manoeuvre them into positions.

They can also be used to guide other, large munitions to their targets. 

After the drone strike on the Kremlin in May, it was reported that Putin became fearful of taking any overseas trips out of fear of being assassinated.

Strikes which hit the Kremlin on May 3 (pictured) were blamed on Ukraine by the Russians

Strikes which hit the Kremlin on May 3 (pictured) were blamed on Ukraine by the Russians

This also came after an arrest warrant from the International Criminal Court over war crimes charges in Ukraine, which requires any member state to detain Putin should he step food in their territory.

There have also been murmurings of a potential coup against him by Wagner mercenary group warlord Yevgeny Prigozhin, who has grown increasingly critical of Russia’s military and its faltering efforts on the battlefield if Ukraine.

According to the Daily Beast, citing the Russian independent outlet Verstka, the Russian leader has grown increasingly fearful for his life in recent months.

The source said ‘behind the scenes of the Kremlin’ that Putin was wary of travelling anywhere and that ‘he has no sense of security.’ 

He did not travel to Turkey for the inauguration of President Recep Erdogan, and he will not attend an upcoming Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in India in July.

Reports have also suggested that Putin’s inner circle has grown smaller and smaller since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, to the point that he is refusing the listen to negative battlefield news from his generals.

Kyiv’s counteroffensive is making steady progress on at least two fronts in Ukraine, with the country’s military saying on Thursday it had regained control of more than 38 square miles of territory.

Russia’s own progress, meanwhile, has been stalled for months, with its military efforts more focused on holdings its defensive positions.

According to Iuliia Osmolovska, director of the GlobSec think-tank, Putin is shunning any bad news of his military’s campaign and refuses to use the internet.

‘As far as we know from reliable sources, Putin stopped receiving any real, up-to-date information from the battlefield some time ago because he doesn’t want to hear bad news,’ she said. 

‘Secondly, he doesn’t use the internet, so he has no other information to verify the news he is hearing,’ she added.

Putin has shown signs of paranoia in the past. Weeks before launching his invasion of Ukraine, he was seen inside the Kremlin holding meetings with foreign dignitaries on a vast table, each party sat at opposite ends. Pictured: Putin (left) meets French President Emmanuel Macron in Moscow on February 7, 2022

Putin has shown signs of paranoia in the past. Weeks before launching his invasion of Ukraine, he was seen inside the Kremlin holding meetings with foreign dignitaries on a vast table, each party sat at opposite ends. Pictured: Putin (left) meets French President Emmanuel Macron in Moscow on February 7, 2022

Russia announced plans on Thursday to stage elections in occupied parts of Ukraine in just three months, Moscow’s latest bid to signal it is in control over the the south and east of the country, even as the Ukrainian counteroffensive presses on.

The Ukrainian assault is in its early stages, and military experts say the decisive battles still lie ahead. But corpses of Russian soldiers and burnt-out armoured vehicles lining the roadside in villages newly recaptured by Ukrainian troops attested to Kyiv’s biggest advances since last year.

‘Our heroic people, our troops on… the front line are facing very tough resistance,’ Zelensky told NBC News in an interview in Kyiv. ‘Because for Russia to lose this campaign to Ukraine, I would say, actually means losing the war.’

Zelensky said the news from the front lines was ‘generally positive but it’s very difficult,’ according to a partial transcript of the interview.



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