Putin breaks out the Kremlin’s ridiculously long table to meet with the head of the UN

Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with UN Secretary-General António Guterres in Moscow on April 26, 2022.TASS/Twitter screengrab

  • Putin dusted off the Kremlin’s 13-foot-long table again — this time to meet with UN chief António Guterres on Tuesday.

  • The ostentatious white wooden table was featured in other high-profile meetings, including with France’s Macron.

  • Media reports have speculated that Putin uses the table to distance himself from his guest’s germs.

Russian President Vladimir Putin dusted off the Kremlin’s infamously long table to meet with United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres in Moscow on Tuesday.

Putin has now met with a handful of high-profile individuals at opposite ends of a 13-foot-long white wooden table, including French President Emmanuel Macron.

Macron said he was stationed at one end of the table after refusing to take a Russian-made COVID-19 test before meeting with Putin; the French leader said he was concerned the Russians would use the sample to steal his DNA.

Media reports have claimed that Putin has obsessed over his health during the pandemic. The impractically lengthy table may be used to limit his exposure to other people, the Guardian reported. It could also be an attempt to appear intimidating or to show off his power in Russia to guests, according to the newspaper.

According to a February report in New York Times, a company in Italy and another in Spain have both laid claim to its production — though it’s not clear who actually made the table.

Putin and Guterres met on Tuesday to discuss Russia’s unprovoked two-month-long war in Ukraine after repeated attempts from Guterres to push for a ceasefire have failed.

Guterres met with Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov earlier on Tuesday, where he called again for the establishment of humanitarian corridors to evacuate civilians from areas of heavy fighting in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region.

Russia has been in hot water at the UN as member states continue to criticize the country for the devastating war in Ukraine.

Earlier this month, the UN General Assembly voted to suspend Russia from the Human Rights Council after the discovery of mass civilian killings and other atrocities in Kyiv suburbs. Russia responded moments later that it would instead quit the council.

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