Russian President Vladimir Putin
– is a figure most people have an opinion about. He is incredibly popular in his homeland, where against virtually the rest of the world thinks he’s one big fool!
But how well do you really know the man who has dominated Russian politics for more than a decade?
Here are 10 facts, you guaranteed did not know:
- Vladimir Putin grew up in a tiny apartment, which his family shared with another family in what was then Leningrad, now St. Petersburg.
- The American magazine Forbes has twice appointed Vladimir Putin as the Most Powerful Man in the World.
- He is an avid martial artist and got a black belt in judo when he was 18 years old. He still trains today.
- He named his Bulgarian shepherd dog Buffy after having held a nationwide competition.
- Putin is happy to ride, hunt tigers swim and dive. He even appeared with his singing talent during a charity event where, among other Goldie Hawn and Kevin Costner were among the audience.
- Putin speaks several languages, including fluent German.
- Putin’s grandfather worked as a cook at Lenin‘s country house and later made food to Stalin several times.
- After his time at law school Putin was part of the KGB.
- He was married to Lyudmila Putina in 1983, and the couple have two daughters, Mariya Putina and Yekaterina Putina. In April 2014, Putin and his wife separated after 31 years.
- Putin is popular among Russians. In the elections of 2000 he was the entire 53% of the vote in 2004 was 73% and in 2008 got his ally, Medvedev 70% of votes. According to opinion polls in May 2014 stood Putin to get the entire 85.9% voting in an election.
- Although he was an atheist as a child, so was Putin religious after two major accidents in the 90s. Today, he is a devoted member of the Russian Orthodox Church.