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Vladmir Putin Strips And Bares Freezing Waters To Mark Orthodox Christian Ritual Epiphany

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Russian President Vladimir Putin took a dip in icy waters for an Orthodox ritual marking the baptism of Jesus.

On Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin braved sub-zero temperatures for an Epiphany Dip in a pool outside of Moscow. The news was confirmed via a video shared by the Kremlin press pool.

The video shows Putin walking out of his log cabin donning his long sheepskin coat. The president then disrobes and inundates himself in the freezing waters of a cross-shaped pool three times before an ice-carved Cruxification statue.

The ritual that Putin seems to be performing commemorates the baptism of Jesus in the River Jordan. On Epiphany, which takes place on January 19th, water is considered to be holy, and many people all over Russia and Eastern Europe submerge themselves in water to express their orthodox Christian faith. Notably, when Putin performed the ritual, the temperate was below freezing point. Temperatures in the Moscow region have been, in fact, at around -20 degrees Celsius (-4 degrees Fahrenheit) in the past week.

The most intriguing part about the video showing Putin performing the Epiphany dip is that people across social media have noticed the president’s blue swimming trunks. Twitter users allege that the trunks bear striking resemblance to the missing blue underwear allegedly used to poison Putin’s rival Alexei Navalny with nerve-agent Novichok last year. While the allegations are unfounded, it hasn’t stopped social media users from erupting in a discussion about the same.

Navalny had previously said that he is certain Putin knew of an elaborate shadowing operation by elite agents before he was poisoned. The Kremlin, however, denies any involvement in Navalny's poisoning.

Source: CNN