On my own: Vladimir Putin walks alone through the streets of St Petersburg


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The Independent Online

Russian President Vladimir Putin cut a lonely figure today after he was spotted wandering by himself through the streets of St Petersburg.

The Russian leader was seen pensively walking through the city following the funeral of his Judo instructor Anatoly Rakhlin. Putin marched on wearing a moody look and avoiding eye contact, while his aides and security rushed to catch up with him.

Putin is known to be a master in the dojo when it comes to Judo and it is clear that the death of Rakhlin has affected him deeply. Rakhlin had reportedly been battling a long illness and considered himself to be a second father to the President.

Putin's behaviour today contrasts sharply with the more macho persona he usually likes to portray in the media. He is known for his outlandish displays of prowess, from piano playing to bear hunting there is nothing that is beyond him.

Most recently Putin was seen delving into the depths below to inspect the ruins of Russian sailing frigate which sunk in 1869.