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Putin maintains social distancing, does not shake hands with people he meets — Kremlin

The Russian president prefers remote work in his daily activities, the presidential spokesman revealed

MOSCOW, April 1. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin maintains social distancing and does not shake hands with the people he meets personally, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Wednesday.

"Of course, everyone maintains social distancing now, everyone does that," the Kremlin spokesman said, answering a question on whether Putin has stopped shaking hands with the people he meets.

Remote work

Due to the current coronavirus pandemic, Russian President Vladimir Putin prefers remote work in his daily activities, the presidential spokesman revealed.

"On the president’s behalf I can say the following. The president prefers to do everything in the remote mode, that is online. Encrypted communication channels are used for these teleconferences," Peskov told the media on Wednesday. "Such technical and technological opportunities do exist."

"Everybody can see the president telecommuting. We all saw him participate in the video summit of the G20 [last week — TASS]. These days distance work will be used by the president to the maximum extent."

Peskov recalled that "the president does not tend to take 'demonstrative' measures. He takes only effective measures."

The presidential spokesman himself holds daily media briefings by telephone, as always. "We maintain distance contact. I do this from my office," he informed.

About the measures taken after the news arrived that the chief doctor of the hospital in Moscow's Kommunarka clinic for treating coronavirus, Denis Protsenko, had contracted the coronavirus several days after Putin, Moscow’s Mayor Sergei Sobyanin and a number of other officials visited the facility last week, Peskov said that "all those who together with the president went to Kommunarka undergo daily coronavirus tests." Peskov added that this rule applied to him, too.

"Naturally, we have been taking precautions and cancelling some conferences. We try to do everything in a distance mode," he commented.

On Wednesday, Peskov informed, Putin is to hold a video conference with Cabinet members. Agriculture and current affairs will be discussed.

"It will be a link-up meeting: the president will be in Novo-Ogaryovo [countryside presidential residence — TASS]. He will contact a customarily large group of government members at their work places," Peskov said. "The technological opportunities for distance work will be employed to the full extent. Also on Wednesday, Putin is to hold another video conference, closed to the media. An international telephone conversation is possible in the afternoon.